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Little Words, Big Ideas
The speaker of "Tulips" seems really alone. She emphasizes how disconnected she feels from the people and things around her. The images she uses to describe her situation turn people into objects,...
Versions of Reality
There are a lot of crazy images in "Tulips." Some are just apt poetic descriptions, like the nurses turning into seagulls. But many others are just plain strange. And most of those odd images have...
Man and the Natural World
Even though it takes place in a hospital room, pretty far away from the natural world, "Tulips" is packed with natural images. To start with, there are the tulips, which excite and upset the speake...
The speaker of "Tulips" is going through a tough time. For one thing, she's just been through surgery, which can be pretty painful and traumatic. It's not just that, though. You can tell from the w...
Freedom and Confinement
Here's the big question: is the speaker in "Tulips" totally trapped, totally free, or somewhere in between? She's certainly physically confined, stuck in her hospital bed. At the same time, she's e...
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