Saturday, March 8, 2014

"The White Dress" Poem Explication

The White Dress
By Lynn Emanuel

What does it feel like to be this shroud
On a hanger, this storm cloud hanging
In the closet? We itch to feel it, it itches
To be felt, it feels like an itch—

Encrusted with beading, it’s an eczema
Of sequins, rough, gullied, riven,
Puckered with stitchery, a frosted window
Against which we long to put our tongues,              

A vase for holding the long-stemmed
Bouquet of a woman’s body. 
Or it’s armor and it fits like a glove.
The buttons run like rivets down the front.

When we’re in it we’re machinery,
A cutter nosing the ocean of a town.
Right now it’s lonely locked up
in the closet; while we’re busy

Fussing at our vanity, it hangs there
In the drooping waterfall of itself,
A road with no one on it, bathed
In moonlight, rehearsing its lines.

  • 5 stanzas 
    • all quatrains
    • very structured 
  • Free verse
  • Viewing the life of a wedding dress before the wedding
  • Below is the list of words that I liked for one reason or another.
    • Encrusted 
    • Puckered 
    •  stitchery
    • frosted 
    • armor 
    • rivets
    • rehearsing 
  • the under lined word is the word I had to look up and the definition is below. 

    • Shroud:
      • a cloth or sheet in which a corpse is wrapped for burial.
      • something that covers or conceals like a garment.
  • The following lines are the lines that I liked:
    • Bouquet of a woman’s body. 
    • Right now it’s lonely locked up 
    • in the closet; while we’re busy

This poem comes from a place that most women don't normally think about, the wedding dress before the wedding, before it has the chance to be worn for more than just a fitting. I liked this because I, like most women, didn't think about it until I read this poem. It made me look at the wedding dress differently. This is why I like the last two lines of stanza 4.

                  "Right now it’s lonely locked up                          
                          in the closet; while we’re busy" 

This gave the dress it's own feeling (Personification, loneliness) as it sat in the closet. 

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