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Eating Alone

Li-Young Lee

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Added by: jenny souers
this poem is like a dream. The poet is halfway between this world and the world in which his father exsisted. He walks about his garden remebering and almost seeing his father. I get the feeling that he resented his father, like his father was kind of a burden. His father shows him a lesson by putting in front of him a buzzing wasp that will now probably die in the sweet juice. The poet seems to be glad to be without his father on his back, maybe it is easier to appreciate him without actually being with him. It seems like his father was intimidating to his son and always expected a lot, which makes someone hard to be around. Now he can eat his dinner with peace of mind which is what he wants.
Added by: one
Or maybe he isn't quite content. Maybe he's lonely. Nowhere does the poem really suggest that his father was harsh.

I think maybe the last line is ironic. What more could a young man want? His father.

Added by: Gnute
I like what you said, jenny, about the poet being in two worlds. "What is left of the day flames/in the maples at the corner of my/eye". On the one hand, this line is about the sunset reflecting in the trees. On the other, it is talking about the remnants of his father's life, or what he remembers of his father; and how the memory of his father haunts the peripheries of the poet's vision/life.

Also, the metaphor of the onions = tears, sadness.
"Eating Alone"
Added by: patricia
I think he misses his father, and is remembering him. Yet he is content in his own life as well.
Added by: Amberlee
i think this poem is about self growth and nostalgia.
He remembers his Father as he becomes his father. so to speak.
He keeps him alive by tending to the nature his father did..He found a common ground in which he would forever be able to relate to his father.
It's about time and how it leaves us only memories.
Added by: idore
The poem shows us a deep relationship between the father and the son. I think the ending is ironic but not in the way "Added By One" suggests. I think the poet is telling himself to bear up to manhood.
Added by: Bev
I agree with Amberlee. A fond memory, interpretation of himself in conjunction with memories of his father. Knowledge accepted we all pass through life in a short time.
Gratefulness for that which he currently has.

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