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Piedra de sol

Piedra de sol

by Octavio Paz

Architecture and Rooms

Symbol Analysis

Any architectural features like hallways, rooms, pillars, and arches are almost always describing the surroundings of the speaker. His beloved is connected to water and nature, and he's trapped inside, like a kid during the last few weeks of school. The houses he describes usually are connected to his memory, which for him is kind of like a prison. Sometimes, though, he's talking about real rooms where he spent time with people in the past.

  • Lines 36-38: While the speaker's memories take place generally in natural or specific places, his own present is a sort of generic building, with lots of corridors, arches, and pillars. This is a signal that we are in the speaker's present. 
  • Lines 72-74: Memory is compared to an endless, empty house in a metaphor
  • Line 260: The speaker talks about a room as though he were remembering a time when he traveled a lot, or was young and lived alone, rather than in a house. 
  • Lines 269-275: These lines represent a list of repeated images that all point to civilization or architecture and also to the confusion of memory. 
  • Lines 280-281: Personification helps the speaker to describe the destruction of architectural features during the war. 
  • Lines 296-300: The rooms described here are "adrift," comparing them to boats in a metaphor
  • Lines 306-310: The nautical metaphor continues, here comparing rooms to ships and submarines. 
  • Lines 310-314: The rooms in this section are compared to tombs in a metaphor
  • Lines 325: The room becomes the most important place in the universe in this paradox: how is every room the center? Does it have to do with the lovers' perspective? 
  • Lines 329-330: The room is compared to a fruit and a star in similes
  • Lines 395-398: We're back in abstract, memory territory again with the return of the corridors of time. The speaker is lost in this maze of memory. 
  • Lines 544-552: The door, arch, and bridge are metaphors for the path of being born.
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