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The Emperor of Ice-Cream

The Emperor of Ice-Cream

by Wallace Stevens

Versions of Reality Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #4

[…] spread it so as to cover her face.
If her horny feet protrude, they come
To show how cold she is, and dumb. (12-14)

Why cover her face up? Think about that for a second. The sheet is for the living, not the dead, who would rather not be reminded of the reality of death. Still, even the sheet can't cover up death's ultimate reality here. The dead woman's feet stick, as if to say "Nice try, guys, but let's face facts. These feet? They are the feet of a dead woman." Death's ultimate reality trumps appearances.

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