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The Comparison of "First Poem for You" by Kim Addonizio and "With Eyes Closed" by Octavio Paz

By skylarjade Jun 14, 2009 1220 Words
The Comparison of “First Poem for You” by Kim Addonizio and “With Eyes Closed” (“Con los Ojos Cerrados”) by Octavio Paz

Is love really blind or just an obsession in the mind? In the sonnet written by Kim Addonizio; titled “First Poem for You” and “With Eyes Closed” (“Con Los Ojos Cerrados”) written by Octavio Paz are similar to one another, as they describe their intense love for someone or something both created in darkness. However, both poems may describe different kinds of love. Love described by Addonizio as “terrifying” in Line 13, unlike Paz whom described his experience in Lines 7 and 8 “We have become enormous/ just knowing each other”. Their experiences of love might have felt the same, but was experienced in totally two different worlds. “With Eyes Closed” (“Con Los Ojos Cerrados”) was originally created in Spanish and translated in English. This poem is about an intense connection between the writer and someone or something in his life. The writer developed this poem through experience and touch from a relationship that increased it’s strength night after night. Paz’s words show how fond he was of the subject he describes so easily. He freely expresses how grand it is to know this person, place or thing.

Addonizio also describes a relationship in her poem “First Poem for You”, in which her words unfold a vivid experience of someone that she has an intense love connection with. Her words reveal the strong desire she has for this someone. Through touch and memory, she is able to describe her experience in detail. Addonizio’s passion is released by reminiscing back the time she spent with this person. Her feelings are so strong that she is not afraid to free her words for the world to see. You are able to identify her focus as a person through her detailed description throughout the entire poem. She uses key words such as “heart.., pulsing.., nipple.., shoulder and pictures in your skin”. It is easy to assume that both poets absorbed the time to remember something or someone that has created emotions within. You can also assume that they both developed some sort of fixation with the subject. Something that they both have come so close to, that the intensity is permanent in their mind. The similarities in descriptions are both suspensive and impressive to the reader’s imagination. According to Boston Globe Archives; “Octavio Paz Invents His Own Reality” by Robert Taylor. Paz describes himself as a lonely Mexican in the night in different from that of the North American. The Mexican man feels oscillated and believes that reality is the world that surrounds us ---exist by itself here, has a life of it’s own and was not invented by man as it was in the United States. I believe this article is a presentation of this poem and that Paz described how he was able to create in his world and what he absorbed from the outside world. Although, I found it interesting that Taylor used a passage from “The Labynith of Solitude” also written by Paz to describe the poem “With Eyes Closed” Taylor did not back up his analysis with an actual quote from Paz as evidence. Therefore the poem is open for interpretation.

In Lines 4-6, “Night after night/I carve you/with closed eyes” are an example that Paz spent time with the subject. Lines 1 -3, “I’m sure of where they are, know my heart the neat lines of lightning pulsing just above….” Also reveals that Adoninzio spent time memorizing the subject. Time is extremely important in these two poems because it allowed them to develop this fantasy in their mind and reveals a part of them that makes an idea for the reader. In comparison, in the last three lines of “With Eyes Closed”, “We have become enormous just know each other with eyes closed”, you can assume that they became great friends without seeing each other, but it sounds like the time is ending. In the last three lines of “First Poem for You”, such permanence is terrifying. So I touch them in the dark; but touch them trying”, you can assume that the poet is afraid of what can happen to their friendship and that the time is disappearing. They both have a recollection of their experience that has touched them within and has no permanence, only in their mind. In the critique by Rebecca V. O’ Neal on the website on “First Poem For You”, O’Neal believes that the speaker is confused with her relationship with the person. Page 1 in paragraph 6, “The speaker obviously has some complex feelings about whomever this “you’ character is; …Freaking out about the increasingly serious nature of their relationship…” I agree with Ms. O’Neal on this interpretation, but I also think that the poem can be interpreted as an infatuation.

Another similarity amongst the poems is that they both show emotions, in the free verse With Eyes Close”, Paz reveals his feeling towards someone or something that he describes, “With Eyes close You Light Within”. From this quote, he is telling the reader that he has deep feelings foe this person or thing. He also reveals his freedom to say it out loud for the world to know. In the sonnet “fist Poem for You, Addonizio also reveals her true feelings for this person, “When I pull you to me, taking you until we’re spent and quiet on the sheets. I love to kiss the pictures in your skin”. From this quote, she is expressing her intense love to the reader. Her words reveal passion and he favorite part of their time together.

Whether it’s a person or thing, both poets want you to believe that they have a strong connection. A connection so strong that allowed them to create such a memorable poem, knowing that every time someone reads these words their poems come to life. In similarities they both closed their eyes to create this story of an illusion. Darkness is a key word in this sonnet and free verse and both poets created their poems though reminiscence. I also believe they both show an example of how love can exist by the beauty of it’s existence.

In conclusion, I enjoyed reading both poems because I believe that romance found is found in everything. Paz kept his poem simple, but still was able to take you to a place that bough within him. His words developed an experience that allowed you to elate. I also believe that he may have been speaking though blind eyes, allowing him to develop a relationship by touch. Addonision bought passion to he words creating a stir in you feelings. She bought you into he imagination allowing you to create this fantasy that she may o may not have experienced. I believe she spoke though a real experience with someone and though touch she created this intense infatuation. Both writers brilliantly wee able to create poems that are continuously bought to life with each eade though time. In comparison to my life as a photographer, I can relate to capturing beauty through the soul. Once you have it you can never let go.

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