6* BP English Blog

My Papa’s Waltz by Theodore Roethke [Reflection by Michelle T.]

February 16, 2011 · 1 Comment · Poetry Reflections 2/18 (actual due date moved to 2/22)

“My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke was a very complex poem that use semi-simple words and very good word choice to create the mood and the setting. This poem “My Papa’s Waltz” can be interpreted many many ways. For me, this poem could either be an only memory of the narrator’s dad or just a sad story about abuse. “But I hung on like death:/Such waltzing was not easy” (3-4). This line from the poem indicates that the narrator wants the love of the father. He yearns for it otherwise he would have just let go. “Such waltzing was not easy” (4). The narrator knows that hanging on and trying to get the love of his father is not easy, nor did he expect it to be.

“My mother’s countenance/Could not unfrown itself” (7-8). This sentence states to the reader that the mother is aware of what is happening but watches from afar and does not try to stop it. Although the two people are running in to almost everything in the kitchen, it may be their first bonding time.

This poem can be interpreted many ways, I look at this poem as a young boy or girl just yearning for the love of his or her father.

One Comment

  • kylie6

    I really like your reflection and i totally agree with it. I never relized the waltizing wasn’t easy part, but I do enjoy your interpretation of that line.