Coming Of The Plague Poem Analysis

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A hurricane rushes up an American coastline, ravaging everything in its path! At the same time, an earthquake topples buildings in an Asian city! While this situation may be hypothetical, it is completely plausible. When Weldon Kees wrote his poem “The Coming of the Plague” he appeared to notice only the hurricanes, earthquakes, and disasters occurring around him, and found that the sunshine and rainbows found in daydreams arise few and far between. This poem harnesses the pain and sorrow ravaging the country, and the author, at that time. The early-to-mid 1930’s is not often described as a high point in American history. In the period that “The Coming of the Plague” was written, the West, Midwest, and South struggled as a result of the Dust…show more content…
In fact, they happen so often that some people grow desensitized to them, but Kees reacted differently. One might believe that, as nature applied its full force and awful attacks were carried out, Kees actually noticed and wrote them all down. Thus, “The Coming of the Plague” was written. According to Coyle, a fire on the ship, Morro Castle, burnt it to ash and took the lives of 137 passengers on September 8, 1934. After the inferno, the stanza “September was when it began” may very well have made its first appearance. (Kees) Later, on November 5 of the same year, a rally occurred in front of a republican candidate’s home the night before a Pennsylvanian election. (Cerullo) Though Kees lived in New York at the time, this conflict could have brought forth the words “All the miscarriages, the quarrels, the jealousies.” Of course, other tragedies surfaced at the time, but a final catastrophe stands out predominantly. On September 2, 1935, an enormous hurricane came from the Atlantic and hit the United States’ eastern coast. The storm caused significant amounts of damage and over 400 fatalities. Devastation struck the country and likely inspired the line, “And heard the sound of rushing wind,” which ended the poem with a sense of more agony to come. (Kees) It seems that no matter what one might believe, Kees’ free verse represents some form of
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