“In Winter in My Room” Analysis

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The poem Appropriation’s Claw is set in winter and portrays a woman’s emotional isolation and barrenness. She finds a harmless worm in her room and ties it with a string, but it transforms into a powerful snake that threatens her. The snake represents the male companion and his rising sexual desires. The woman is both fascinated and terrified by the snake’s advances, and she attempts to appease it. The poem is allegorical and depicts a woman’s rejection of physical desire. The imagery invites Freudian interpretations about the subconscious mind and the repression of sexual desires. The poem ends abruptly with the woman denying the reality of the experience by claiming it was a dream.

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“Appropriation’s claw. Afraid, he hissed “Of me”, No cordiality, He fathomed me. Then to a Rhythm Slim Secreted In his Form As Patterns swim Projected him. That time I flew Both eyes his way Lest he pursue Nor ever ceased to run Till in a distant Town Towns on from mine” This was a dream.

In Winter in My Room’ is set in winter, at a time of emotional barrenness and isolation. Finds in her room a harmless worm. Worm lover, tied by a string, idea of being restricted by someone.

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Worm becomes a snake it grew (sexual connotation, phallic? ) Ties of marriage, person has transformed. Sin’ “How fair you are” flattery, appeasing the snake, attempting to. Disgust & admiration, also submission sexual act 1. 24-31 snake of Eden. Evil, sly, cruel. Symbolic finds a harmless worm in her room; stands for male companion. Cautious, decides to keep it tied with a string. But the worm remain contained, and when she returns, she encounters a powerful snake that threatens her.

She shrinks in fear and attempts to appease it: “How fair you are! Propitiation claw’; desires and advances. His advances please and attract her. His rising sexual desire rallies the coiling rhythm of a snake about to attack. Fascinated, yet terrified, she wavers momentarily for she cannot shake her own deep-seated fears of masculine aggression. He, who was ‘pink, lank and something warm’; phallic imagery; becomes ‘ringed with power’; coiled to attack; and threatens to break out of the controls she had put on him.

Retreats to “a distant Town/ Towns on from mine”; isolated state of being; to her former isolated self. Poem ends abruptly with what first appears to be a deliberate diversion: “This was a dream”, but we know that in an effort to wipe her memory clean of the experience, o repress the inadequacy she felt as desire was overcome by terror, she maintains, “This was a dream”. ‘Secreted in his form’; natural male force.

The poem is allegorical in its framework for it depicts a woman’s rejection of the physical by saying that it “was a dream”; not real but opposed to reality. Its imagery has invited Freudian interpretations as to how the conscious mind, the ego denies and rejects the surging drives of the subconscious. ‘Fathomed’; studied and comprehended, that she is attracted towards him. Before marriage? Sin committed if sexual act so pretend it was a dream?

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