Olds’ insertion of the dancer and the ice-skater could also further emphasize (or exhaust, rather) the physicality of sex without love.
Olds does a good job of conveying the breadth of her particular loss in a way that feels universal; the betrayal of a love that inflicts the pain it once provided respite from.
Through its naked testimony she continues to embody her purpose, Do what you are going to do, and I will tell about it.
Through Olds’ use of irony, free verse, and metaphor, the poet is able to affectively communicate the negligence and irresponsibility of sex without love.
Furthermore, Olds’ explores physical desire, procreation of unwanted children, and the mention of religious affiliations in hopes of answering the question she poses for the audience in the first sentence of the poem.
most people) it can take a significant life change to occasion the event; marriage, death, scary illness.
I remember an old boyfriend’s mother kept a shelf of Jane Kenyon and Donald Hall in an otherwise poetry-spare home.
This ability to speak from a conflicted perspective has become a trademark, established in her first book, Satan Says, “I love him too, / you know…
I love them but / I’m trying to say what happened to us”.
She’d collected them during her treatment for cancer, had sought out illness narratives to help make sense of her experience.
In a bewildering world where cruelty and love coexist in a family, Sharon Olds has consistently served as a sense-making machine.