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Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird


by Wallace Stevens

Analysis: Tough-O-Meter

(5) Tree Line

Stevens can seem obscure and philosophical at times, like when he talks about nature's "pantomime" and the blackbird's involvement in what he knows. You just have to remember that he's a great poet because of his use of sound, rhythm, and style, not ideas. Anyone can have ideas. Not everyone can come up with phrases like, "It was evening all afternoon." Best of all, if you don't quite "get" what's going on in one section, you can just try your luck on the next one. If you're open to being baffled, this is a poem that even a first-time poetry reader can enjoy.

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