Study Guide

my father moved through dooms of love Stanza 13

By E. E. Cummings

Stanza 13

Lines 49-50

My father moved through theys of we,
singing each new leaf out of each tree

  • Even at death's door, the speaker's father is still moving and singing. This time, he's moving "through theys of we."
  • To us, this could be a way of expressing the distance that inevitably grows between the dying and those around them. "They" sounds a lot less personal than "we," right?
  • So it's kind of like "we," the speaker and the other people close to his father, are gradually becoming "theys," people that are more distant. 
  • Despite all that, the father is still singing, and creating life all around him by making the trees bud. 
  • Again, we see him bringing life out of death with song, like with morning out of night thing.

Lines 51-52

(and every child was sure that spring
danced when she heard my father sing)

  • The father might be old, but children can still see the youth in him. 
  • It says a lot that the young can sense the youth that still lives in the older man. In fact, he's so vital that spring itself dances when he sings. (Now that's pretty vital.) 
  • Also, we're sure you noticed that another mention of a season just popped up. We've gone through spring, summer, fall, winter, and now, with the father at death's door, we're at spring again. 
  • It reminds us that the speaker's father lived his life as hard as he could right up until that last second.

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