Monday, October 17, 2011

Countee Cullen

In "Yet I Do Marvel," Cullen starts out by using God in his couplet. This poem kind of seemed like in the beginning of it, Cullen tried to use God as a way to open up the audience but after the first two lines, he contradicted himself and made it look like he didn't know what to believe. He makes it seem like he questions God, because it God was "so good" then there wouldn't be blind me, starving men, or dying men..but what he is forgetting is that God had to die for us for us to even have life so therefore he should be a little more grateful. This poem was kind of confusing and it was short as well which made it a little harder to understand but I understood it once we discussed it in class.

In "Heritage," I was kind of confused with what he was talking about. Cullen talks about whether Africa is "true" or not and he has a hard time distinguishing which way he should go. He feels like his heart is going with Africa which is his emotional side, but his head is telling him to go to America because there is more opportunities for him there. He italicizes certain the beginning, a piece in the middle, and a portion at the end to distinguish that these are important parts of the poem, kind of like the chorus of a song. He tries to explain to the audience that he feels like he isn't accepted by either heritage, so therefore it makes the decision for him harder. He feels like he is alienated from society and his home, so he really has no where to go which is kind of sad. He also kind of puts down Africa as well, maybe inferring that it wasn't exactly what he wanted but its where he felt like he really belonged.


  1. He's already in America, he had never been to Africa. That totally got me too. He lives in America and I agree that he feel alienated by both societies because of who he is. He doesn't fit into a normal mold and this causes him great strife. He tries to figure out where he belongs and who he is but simply cannot because he doesn't fit in a little box that seems to be required to fit into a society.

  2. Ohhhh that makes it a little easier to understand now that I know he was already in America. Geeez i feel dumb now. He seems to be confused on which society to partake in, but instead of really trying to figure it out he confines himself to his own little world.