David Ignatow's Poetry

1322 Words6 Pages
David Ignatow was the ideal voice for the ordinary man because of his life experience and turmoil he struggled with. Placed in the time period surrounding the Great Depression, Ignatow, like many at the time, struggled to sustain a stable livelihood. Despite his efforts to find work and make a living, Ignatow still placed a focus on his poetry and wrote a book called Poems in 1948. This first installment of Ignatow’s poetry lineage was well received, but despite that, the poet still had to work various jobs and write his poems in between shifts. Ignatow enlists a number of techniques that appeal to his audience. The life and works of David Ignatow is characterized by internal turmoil, relating to an ordinary man, and honest, unguarded opinions.…show more content…
Similar to many Americans at the time, Ignatow struggled to make a living for himself. He turned to poetry in this dark time to keep his mind off the impending personal economic failure. Ignatow’s need for poetry was expressed through the words of “As I Stumble.” Ignatow utilized a metaphor to express the relation between the sun and his poetry. To him, his poetry became the only thing that kept him from being “frozen to death” (Ignatow, “As I Stumble,” line 3). This related to many people of the time because many were searching for ways to take their mind of the seriousness of the time. While Ignatow turned to poetry, some turned to reading his poems as an outlet from the struggles of their lives. In Ignatow’s earlier years, he mainly focused on the “evils of business and having to earn a living” (Smith). Many critics assume this hatred in the beginning of his career stemmed from his childhood experiences. As explained by himself in an interview, Ignatow’s childhood was dominated by his “parents’ anxieties about the family business” (“David Ignatow”). At first, as a child Ignatow was extremely interested in what his parents’ conversations held in relation to the business and material aspects. However, it did not take long for Ignatow to realize that he “did not value material success” (“David Ignatow”). Rather, Ignatow preferred the “personal freedom” he was given when he was writing his poetry (“David Ignatow”). Ignatow possessed an ideal view on life and the world, which often found him in trouble with many of his bosses. He quickly discovered that the effort he had to put into working took away from his time to write, which caused him to find himself at odds with those he worked for. Most people felt as if happiness would not be achieved if they did not “voluntarily submit to the unpleasant demands of the industry” (“David Ignatow”). However, Ignatow could
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