Women and Men: Differing Poetic

Being of nature, a supposedly passive entity does not necessarily stime the female poet, it can also, in Bishops construcion, empower her as a speaker.

Yet, there is one caveat — for Bishops poem remains tantalizingly silent about her own gender as a female. Thus, even as late as Bishop, the idea of an openly female speaker within a poem associating herself with nature, and seeing herself reflected in nature remains tenuous. Thus, although not Byronic in its imposition of meaning upon the natural world, nor Barrett Browning like in its denial of it, Bishop does not comlpetely deny the cultural assumptions of associating women with nature that still haunt female poets today.

Unlike men, women must grapple with this association as authors, of passivitity and feminine voicelessness as mere subjects of the poetic experience — while men can chose to view nature as neutrals, rather than as conciously gendered speakers.

Works Cited

Bishop, Elizabeth. “The Fish.” From Charters, Ann & Samuel. Literature and its Writers. Third edition. New York: Bedford, 2002.

Browning, Elizabeth Barrett.” “How do I love thee? From Charters, Ann & Samuel. Literature and its Writers. Third edition. New York: Bedford, 2002.

Gordon George — Lord Byron. “She Walks in Beauty Like the Night. From Charters, Ann & Samuel. Literature and its Writers. Third edition. New.