Study Guide

Circe's Power Sound Check

By Louise Glück

Sound Check

The volume goes crazy in this poem. At times we feel like Circe is shouting ("I'm sick of your world" [4]), and at other moments we feel like she's as quiet as a mouse ("I saw/ we could be happy here" [12-13]). What we really miss is the sound of Odysseus' voice, which leaves a gap the size of the Grand Canyon in this poem. At times we can almost hear the sound of the ocean lapping behind Circe's words. Generally, however, we can only hear Circe's voice riddled with emotion, at once soft as a breeze, and then sharp as a chainsaw chopping wood.