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Not Waving But Drowning

Stevie Smith

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2004-07-08
Added by: Sandy
A little bit of everyone's life can be found in this poem. With that in mind, one finds a place of comfort and awareness that words of this nature have been written.
i wouldn't want you lot on my beach
2004-10-10
Added by: josh
if i was aware that a man was drowning, i'd surely try to help him! i think smith is trying less to point at the impudence of OTHERS than to demonstrate how UNAWARE of each other's suffering we are. people are seldom able to accurately communicate their strife. it is an interminable conditon.
for melissa
2004-10-11
Added by: josh
if you understood anything of "E.E. Cummings" you wouldn't capitalize his initials. it's almost blasphemous. in his poetry, the use of upper case was reserved for effects other than those conventional, such as to indicate the start of sentence, or for people's names.
and why not: "the period" takes care of the former, and regarding the latter, just who do we think we are anyway?!

i agree with you though that cummings is (was) quite the dude. it takes a dude to introduce the "single bracket"!
I was too far out...
2005-12-29
Added by: Emma
I first read this poem many years ago, as a student and an amateur poet myself. It led me to much more of Smith's poetry but this is the piece I carry with me in my head and my heart every day.
It is one of the most inspirational but succinct pieces of writing for me - it perfectly sums up that feeling of total alienation and 'aloneness' when you feel like it's you against the world.
I think at times in our lives we have all had that feeling that we are not waving but drowning....
English 4
2006-03-22
Added by: Keanna PLeasant
For me not to like poetry i really enjoyed reading this poem by Smith because it related to me in some ways
what seems to be, is not...
2006-03-28
Added by: Rose
Ø The writer uses “moaning”, to emphasize how the man is trying to reach out to the people or maybe his friends. The writer could have used shouting, but did not, because… He (the man) wants to be heard, and yet not wanting to be heard. He drowns but does not want anybody to notice; he may seem to be happy and “waving”, but in reality his desperate for help.

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