Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Rules of Sleep

Rules of Sleep
by Howard Moss

In the sludge drawer of animals in arms,
Where the legs entwine to keep the body warm
Against the winter night, some cold seeps through -
It is the future: say, a square of stars
In the windowpane, suggesting the abstract
And large, or a sudden shift in position
That lets one body know the other's free to move
An inch away, and then a thousand miles,
And, after that, even intimacy
Is only another form of separation.

I really liked the beginning of thi poem, especially the part, "Where the legs entwine to keep the body warm." I always find it fascinating how some of the things that we do (things that aren't necessarily taught to us) are things that other people do, too! I see a little bit of the slant rhyming thing going on in the poem with "arms" and "warm", and "stars" and "abstract"...I never noticed rhyming like that until we discussed it in class. The latter half of the poem I had trouble understanding becuase I didn't know what the poet was inferring to when he described the body getting further and further way - and then I remembered that the poem is about sleeping. I know that in one's sleep, it seems like they're somewhere else - not necessarily in another physical place, just mentally somewhere else - perhaps a dream was trying to be described through the "[other] form of separation." I am really impressed with how Moss can keep the words of his poem vague, but descriptive enough for the reader to get a feel for what he's meaning to portray through his words. Good poem, especially since sleep (or lack thereof) is something that we can all relate to.


Blogger Matt said...

This seems like it should be the "rules before sleep" because the speaker does not seem to do much sleeping, but is rather very conscious. I do like the abstractness of this poem though. Almost like Picaso.

8:07 PM  
Blogger John Park said...

I really liked the imagery in this poem. It makes me wish I had someone to entwine my legs around at night.

12:23 PM  

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