Study Guide

my father moved through dooms of love Death

By E. E. Cummings

Death

When you've got an elegy on your hands, there's a high probability that the theme of death is going to rear its skull-y head. In "my father moved through dooms of love," the speaker honors his dearly departed father with a celebration of the way the man lived his life. Without shying away from the darkness and gruesomeness that comes along with the theme of death, "my father moved through dooms of love" manages to be an uplifting homage to a loved one who's passed on.

Questions About Death

  1. Overall, do you think the poem presents a positive view of death, or is it more doom and gloom? Why do you think so?
  2. How do the lines in the poem that are more obviously about death play off of the more metaphorical references in the lines about the seasons?
  3. Which would you say the speaker values more: the rewards of the afterlife, or the rewards of life itself? What parts of the poem give you your ideas?Ā 
  4. Do you think that the speaker's father would agree with his son's attitude toward death? Why or why not?

Chew on This

The speaker seems to have contradicting feelings about the nature of the afterlife, or the lack thereof. Make up your mind, pal.

The speaker is mostly like "whatevs" to death and makes this elegy a celebration of his father's life.

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