Cite This Page
Skunk Hour
Skunk Hour
by Robert Lowell

Speaker Point of View

Who is the speaker, can she or he read minds, and, more importantly, can we trust her or him?

The speaker is someone who is mentally ill. He seems sad and lonely, as well as bitter (note the tone he uses when describing the townspeople) and restless (driving around all night, standing on his back porch watching the skunks). So can we trust this guy? Well, it's hard to say. You can definitely see the descriptions, especially as the poem progresses, getting stranger. It's pretty cool, actually, to know that everything we find out about this place is slightly distorted because it's seen through the lens of somebody who's mentally unstable. Who knows, maybe the sane version would have been super boring.

Next Page: Setting
Previous Page: Form and Meter

Need help with College?