The Emigree

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  • The Emigree
    • Form
      • Measured and controlled - 8, 8, 9
      • Calm narrator, first person, no rhyme
      • Enjambment in stanzas 1 and 2, end-stopping stanza 3
      • Each stanza ends with "sunlight"
    • Structure
      • Memory grows and strengthens as poem progresses
    • Context
      • Experience of travelling in Eastern Europe and Russia
      • Long-term partner defected from USSR
    • Quotes
      • "I comb its hair and love its shining eyes"
      • "my shadow falls as evidence of sunlight"
      • "the city of walls"
      • "They accuse me of being dark in their free city."
      • "There was once a country...I left it as a child"
      • "That child's vocabulary I carried here/like a hollow doll, opens and spills a grammar"
      • "I can't get it off my tongue. It tastes of sunlight."
      • "there's no way back at all/but my city comes to me in its own white plane"
      • "I never saw it in that November"
      • "sick with tyrants"
      • "I am branded by an impression of sunlight"
      • "time rolls its tanks"

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