The Vacuum Poem Analysis

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The Vacuum is a poem about the emptiness of an old man after her wife died. Nemerov started by presenting the environment in which the old man lived in. He also pointed out that the vacuum cleaner was in a corner, seemingly “grinning” (4) at him. He then stated that after his old wife has passed away, she seemed to be inside the vacuum cleaner (8, 9), cleaning up the house whenever the old man used it. The poet further expressed his feeling of loneness by recalling his days with his wife, where she “crawl (s), in the corner and under the stairs”. (12) At the end, Nemerov expressed his views on his life, how it was like “dirt” (13), without the company of his wife. The title of the poem is very symbolic, in a sense that it reflects the emptiness of the old man’s life. In the poem, Nemerov described, in vivid detail, how the vacuum cleaner is similar with his deceased wife, cleaning the house for him. However, the title of the poem is “The Vacuum” instead of “The Vacuum Cleaner”. The symbolic meaning behind the title lies within the meaning of the word “vacuum”. According to Merriam Webster, “vacuum” can be defined as “an empty space” or “a situation in which an important person has gone”. Combined with the overall tone and feeling that the poet…show more content…
However, this poem has no obvious rhyming scheme. In addition, the meter and foot of the poem varies from line to line. Having such an irregular structure can fully express the messiness, both of the poem and the poet’s house. In line 11, the poet explained that “there is old filth everywhere” in his house. This is due to the fact that the poet’s wife has deceased and there is no one else to clean the house for the poet. The irregular meter and foot echoes the disorderliness of the house. It also serves to enforce the image of messiness and untidiness of the poet’s
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