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.
somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond


by E. E. Cummings

Stanza 5 Summary

Get out the microscope, because we’re going through this poem line-by-line.

Line 17-19

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)

  • So, the speaker has taken on this journey into the mysterious realms of his lover's power, and here in the last stanza kind of throws up his hands. 
  • He's been trying to pinpoint exactly what it is that gives her so much power over him, but here basically admits that he has no idea. She can open and close him at will, and there's nothing he can do about it. 
  • Now, he admits that some deep part of him knows that he'll never quite know.
  • Notice how he brings back the idea of the eyes having a voice and, of course, the image of roses. Check out "Symbols, Imagery, Wordplay" for breakdowns of those elements.

Line 20

nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands 

  • With this last line we get a little more personification when the speaker implies that the rain has hands. 
  • However, once again we're reminded that his lover is more powerful than a force of nature. 
  • And once again her power is subtle, or you could even say fragile. 
  • Her hands are even smaller than the rain's, giving her the ability to open and close the speaker more deftly than the rain can open and close a rose. Again, we're reminded of the paradox of the immense power this addressed person has over our speaker and her total fragility. 
  • We've got some more squished words here too.
  • First, there's "nobody,not." To us smooshing these two negative words together seems to emphasize that absolutely nobody has got amazing small hands like the speaker's lover. 
  • So, a couple words later when "rain,has" comes up, it ironically emphasizes what the rain doesn't have.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...