An analysis of Last night by Sharon Old
The main theme in the poem is that of love, there is also some focus on sex as some sort of physical interaction that is void without love and emotion. The author of the poem highlights this using careful word choice as well as using the tine in the poem. From the audience perspective, they get to know how it feels to have sex without love. Words like afraid, love implies some unsure ambiguity to the sexual experiences that took place in the previous day. There is a comparison of the experience to dragonflies within the sun as well as one hundred degrees at noon.
Such choice of words provoke thoughts of something steamy, hot perhaps even discomfort. On line 12, the poem says “Did I know u? No Kiss, no tenderness suggesting harsh or perhaps a deadly tone. The author’s words are marked by intensity, pain and fear with no affection. This essay thus analyzes Last night poem by Sharon olds bringing out various key aspects in five paragraphs.
The author is equally afraid and surprised by the love. Using metaphors to set out poem scenes. For example the line “after sex they embraced and held each other” it’s evident that this is love brought out in all its brutality. Perhaps this might have been a one night stand or love at first sight. It’s however, not their first time to have sex but the first time in love. The author being female, this maybe a real life story or some sort of fantasy poem from either gender. The terminologies used in the poem suggest that the subject is sexually submissive which in many cases is true with females. Some moments can be lost on emotions, illusive and writhing for love.
I believe that the author’s description of love in a rather brutal way has more to do with pleasure as opposed to pain. The two are so into each other at this moment that they seem to want to be close to each other. The other part of the poem deviates to the religious aspect regarding the loveless act; sex is deemed a holy act yet the subjects engaged in it without love. The line “don’t be holier than thou’, implies being so holy or perfect thus losing vision of what is key. There is also an indication of one sexually dominant partner while the other is submissive sexually “I groan to remember it, and when we started to die, then I refuse to remember” this seems like the climax, a moment that seems hard to describe.
They remain close together even after the climax and she goes ahead to fall asleep while in that state. At such moment, she then realizes that all the craziness might have been actually a moment of love. This is a clear indication that despite the fact that this started out with not feelings, it might have developed into something. The writer’s word choices make the tone of the poem cold and emotionless. If I had not known about the authors broken family, I would have perhaps been confused as to why she writes about sex and love in such a negative way.
I am tempted to believe that her broken family has contributed to her opinions about sex and love particularly at the beginning where Old recites a one night stand. It is also interesting that the poem begins with a regret of a sexual experience, yet ends telling audiences about love. The poem seems to equally tell of a fake and real love. With a few instances of lust, love is predominant in the poem. There is also a strong message to audiences not to engage in sex without love.
The poem is definitely about sex, we can infer this from the metaphors and words chosen by the author. It is hard to understand the relationship between the subjects, as the author contradicts herself, at one time there is a mention of love and in another she mentions no kiss. Nevertheless, there are many mentions of emotions and the moment between a passionate night and one night stand are almost similar. Furthermore, the night of pleasure is perhaps not filled with the aftermath, suggesting that this might have been a one night stand with love at first sight. The poem is insightful and interesting though quite provoking. My analysis made me appreciate the subtle debt of the authors writing style.