Analysis Of The Poem 'Talk' By Terrance Hayes

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Poetry is a very unique type of writing. Poetry allows people to express their emotions in a way they feel comfortable. Every poem has a meaning to it, whether it is talking about food, interest, or a moment in their lives. Readers often mistake the poet as the narrator, although in many cases this is true. Many poets are the narrators and the poems are about their personal life. In contrary though, they sometimes write about matters happening around them. The poet Terrance Hayes from South Carolina, has a very literal poem called “Talk”. The poem “Talk”, is about a young African American boy in middle school. This boy is on his school’s basketball team. The poem begins by saying “Talk like a nigger now, my white friend, M, said (1) / after my M.L.K. and Ronald Reagan impersonations (2)”. M.L.K and Ronald Reagan were two highly respected superiors. The word choice of each was that of a more educated level. Which is why the young African American is told to “Talk like a nigger now”. His friend, the white guy, is saying that although his impersonations were good it was time to talk like other African Americans talk. In the next few lines the speaker says he did not hit the friend, he simply pretended as if he didn’t hear him. That says a lot about the speaker, it shows he is wise and does not let words affect him.…show more content…
They changed and went out to the court to play the game. “...my white friend (18)/ thinking I was far from that word (19)/ that he could say it to me (20)” , his friend may have thought the word didn’t make the speaker angry of some sort. By the way the speaker expresses himself we can see that the comment did anger him. The speaker says “.. I didn’t let him taste the salt (21)/ and iron in the blood, I didn’t teach him (22)”. This is imagery because you can taste the salt and iron of the blood as you read the

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