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This Is A Photograph Of Me

Margaret Atwood

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Added by: Jessie
WOW... Janelle, you have got to open up your brain...have some vision. I highly doubt that the poem has only one meaning...and Anastasia, you're no better. You guys don't have any imagination.
Added by: Janae
I must say that I agree with Guy & SarahP. I believe Margaret is just trying to say that even if you look and look all you'll find is someone who's already dead. And by the way, STOP OVER-ANALYZING! This isnt meant to b logical.
Added by: nauxis
i think it's great going that there are so many people interested in this poem, like i am. i think many of yall make great sense. i especially liked that post about the symbolic meanings of the words like "slope", "house", "light", "lake", etc. and i think it's great fun analyzing poems! [as long as they're not to bombastic] so even if some of us may overdo it, it's really quite meaningful!! ((: thankyou everyone for enlightening me!!
Added by: Denise
I totally agree with Dianne's point. I think Atwood may have been creating an illusion. When we read the first 3 stanzas all we can picture is a nice house on a lake, but then she gives us the horrid information that a girl died there. Things are not always as they seem. Atwood frequently explores the difference between fiction and reality in her work and this is yet another example.
Atwood - Photograph
Added by: Amy
I just want to say that I think Mona Lisa is spot on, I had an idea that the poem had dominant emotions such as doubt and a somewhat shamefull essence i.e brackets and everything being hidden and not certain. Now reading what Mona Lisa has said it seems to make so much sense to me and I truely feel that is what the poem is about, the elements of the picture begin to emerge reflecting the narrators awareness of her death, I feel this is her speaking of growth within her life and realisation of sexism becoming much more clearer to her.
Added by: Mitty
I found this poem very realistic, and intruiging.
Added by: Candice
this poem is awesome. i have to do it for my poetry assignment tomorrow. my teacher is all about analysing down to the last word, and thats what poetry is about. EVERYTHING YOU READ IS THERE FOR A PURPOSE. although this is only a 26 line poem i beleive, random lines were not just thrown in to trick you, or make it look pretty. each word should be taken into consideration.

overall idea: not everything is as it appears

amazing poem Atwood
atwood poem
Added by: seventy-five pennies
i found that the poem had two meanings. There was the surface meaning about the dead girl. In which Atwood, introduces a blurred picture and she explains how he it looks, and then as an aside explains of her own death. The aside (the death), which is demonstrated through the brackets makes the death seem insignificant, although the reader realizes that it is more important the scenery. Atwood in this sense makes us look at things in a different perspective. Now, someone posted something about the photograph being about poetry. I agree with that. Especially in the last 2 stanzas i can see some evidence. The water and the light could symbolize structure and content, and the fact that she calls it a distortion kind of touches on how she distorts the poem by making the structure and content work in opposition and distort her meaning. and the last line, "if you look long enough, oyu will see me". i think shes saying that if you work at the structure and tone and content that you will see her; the poet.

Anyway that was my rant. i hope i made it clear enough that someone can discern what i was trying to say.

Oh and to the people who are leaving nasty comments: get the fuck over it, if you dont agree wiht someone argue rather than insult, poetry should be enjoyed and explored!
Added by: zlatica
Thanks people,you're great,but only one person really knew what the song was about! It was about women's position in society-they were forgotten,unknown,'behind the surface'!
Added by: Emu
Hoaky, so there are some unique and interesting ideas floating around out there. Personally, as Fred and Jung have observed, lakes and other large bodies of water are symbolic of either the unconscious or collective unconscious mind. The fact that the person in the poem is drowned in the middle of a lake seems to indicate that thier true 'self,' that is the core of thier personalities/soul etc..., is buried deep within thier mind. The information about the background elements at the start of the poem serves to show that not everything is as it seems and that the soul of a person is not thier outside persona. The blurry quality of the backgound bolsters this idea. You see me, but you don't really know me. Essentially, we are all locked, drowned, deep within the recesses of our minds surrounded by only a glimpse of our true selves that we show to those aorund us.

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