Diana Marie Delgado’s “Correspondance”

When choosing a poem that stood out to me, I just kind of flipped through the book hoping that a cool title or interesting format would catch my eye. I stumbled upon “Correspondance” and the long-lined couplets grabbed my attention. Then I started reading and wow. This poem. You know when you read a poem and you wish you had written it? Yeah, there are some lines in here that articulate feelings that I’ve never known how to articulate. Delgado starts by bringing us “deep in the moth hour.” What an incredible way to signify time, space, and mood! These wow moments just keep happening for me: In the next stanza, “the real me slipped out like a hiccup,” one stanza later “Mom’s fine, breaking/,” in the fourth stanza “I’ve never seen so much sad architecture,” and the final phrase “Or have you learned how to read in the dark?” This poem is packed with so many moments I admire for their language, their evocative simplicity. Then (thinking about the context of this class), I began to notice the poem’s sound. The subtle rhyme of “moth hour” and “no altar” in the first line, the way the consonants of “crooked…eggshell” play with “crocodile” in line 5, and the way the direct rhyme of “me” and “Z” create a catchy, even playful rhythm which contrasts (yet compliments)  the serious tone of the second stanza, are all sonic achievements just subtle enough, I think, to allow the poem to sing and resonate with me as the reader without hitting me over the head with tricks. This is how I hope to use sound in my own poems.

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