Subject poem journal
Posted by Nicola
Posted on Thu Nov 5 13:08:24 1998
From IP  

I ask my mother to sing.
In the poem, some places sound familiar: Peking, Summer Palace, Kuen Ming Lake, they are all famous names of places in China. The poet who wrote it has Chinese parents. Maybe he never had the chance to go to his motherland, so from his mother and grandmother, he knew some stories about China. From hearing them sing songs about it, he could sense some emotions his mother and grandmother had toward their home, and know how much they love it. He could imagine the picture of his original home from the songs. So, he enjoys asking them to sing these kinds of motherland songs. At the end,"both women have begun to cry, but neither stops her song", means that their songs brought back their memory of their dear home and family in the far away place. They thought about their life there, maybe it is a hard life, but it is their home. Perhaps they are singing the songs in America. They may have a difficult time travelling to and settle down in America, where their children can have a better environment to live in. But still, no matter how bad the live is at home, there is no place that can substitute for home, and they cry at missing the place they came from, but they would not stop the song because it is comforting to sing what they truly love.
Those Winter Sundays
This poem was probably written when the poet is old and think back about his childhood. From "fearing the chronic angers of that house", we could know that he didn't have a warm and lovely family life. It is proved in his biography that his parents divorced. So maybe when he was young, he thought that his father didn't love him. But throughout the poem, he is gracious for what his father did for him, and he was at that time too small to notice it. It seems that his father is a stern person, so the writer is afraid of him, but in many ways he cared for his children. His father showed his love in a more modest way, not like passionate ones as kisses and hugs. So it is difficult for the children to feel his love. But the poet expressed his regret that he didn't realize then. Now he is older, when he began to reflex back, he remembered some of his father's small actions that are meant to show his love.

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