Study Guide

my father moved through dooms of love Principles

By E. E. Cummings

Principles

and should some why completely weep
my father's fingers brought her sleep: (13-14)

Wow, what a guy. Whenever some "why" is crying, the speaker's father is there to comfort her. By calling a person a "why," the speaker could be saying that she's someone with a lot of big unanswerable questions (which can definitely make you feel kind of down sometimes). So, perhaps a big part of the way the speaker's father comforted people was by helping them deal with nagging questions like, "Why do bad things happen to good people?" and "Why do we exist?"

a heart of star by him could steer
and pure so now and now so yes (22-23)

Here, pure starlight is used to represent the purity of a human heart. The speaker seems to be saying that his father was extra pure, because people with star-hearts could steer by him. (We're not sure we'd want people with big burning star hearts coming at us. It'd just be freaky.) What's up with all this "now" and "yes" stuff, though? Could it mean that the father really lived in the moment? What do you think?

no hungry man but wished him food;
no cripple wouldn't creep one mile
uphill to only see him smile. (29-32)

You know a guy is nice when some dude who's starving wants to give him his cheeseburger or whatever. And even guys who couldn't walk would crawl to see him grin a little. Wow, the speaker is almost making his father sound a bit like Jesus or something. We're guessing we've got a little case of hyperbole (exaggeration) here, but we're not doubting that the father was a nice dude.

septembering arms of year extend
yes humbly wealth to foe and friend (37-38)

Man, the speaker's father seriously is a generous guy. Not only does he give money to his pals, but also to those who are out to get him. Hmm, is that really such a good idea? Whatever, it's generous at least.

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