From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
Helen

Helen

  

by H.D.

Analysis: Tough-o-Meter

(3) Base Camp

H.D.'s "Helen" doesn't have any fancy two-dollar words. It doesn't have some crazy rhyme scheme or meter. It doesn't have off-the-wall references (besides the reference to, you know, Ms. Helen of Troy herself), and the poem itself is pretty short.

But the poem's very spareness—the fact that it's only eighteen lines, that there aren't many words, that the words are so basic and simple-seeming—can actually make interpreting the poem a bit tricky. How can you interpret a poem in which there's not that much actual poem?

Never fear; Shmoop's here. If you're intimidated by H.D.'s spare style, check out our line-by-line "Summary" of the poem. We'll help you read between those lines.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...

Advertisement