A couple goes for a walk in the park after days of bad weather. They walk separately as their relationships is troubled. They stop at the sight of swans who mirror their relationship and walk away hand in hand suggesting they have reconciled.

Ideas and Themes:

  • Distance
  • Fulfillment
  • Nature

Structure:

  • They are both separated for the first 5 stanzas but reunite in the final 2. The swans represent a turning point in stanza 3 which reflects a turning point in their relationship

Form:

  • Written in tercets which gives an unbalanced look hinting at a damaged relationship.
  • Frequent enjambment emphasizes continuity
  • Final stanza is a couplet showing they have reunited as a couple

Language:

  • “Clouds have given their al”- personification of weather reflects issues in relationship
  • “days of rain then a break…in which we walked” enjambment shows a pause in weather and in their arguments
  • “waterlogged earth, gulping for breath” personification shows relationship struggling for life
  • “skirted the lake”- “skirted” meaning stay away from each other but also avoiding the issue
  • “halved themselves”- “halved” showing the split between them when they were once whole which reflects the couple relationship also
  • “icebergs of white feather”- icebergs have more on the bottom than top so the metaphor suggests that they keep secrets from each other which is why they have a weak foundation for their relationship
  • “’they mate for life’”- first time they talk showing they’ve turned a corner in their relationship
  • “porcelain”- this is beautiful and strong showing the hope their relationship will be the same
  • “stilling water” showing the ripples in relationship are ending and becoming calm once again
  • “lakes…shingle…sand…noticed…hands…somehow” sibilance reflects softening of tension between them
  • “swum…wings”-swan imagery reflects how they are following the example of swans
  • “the distance between them”- hands have come together to overcome the physical and mental barriers of their relationship.

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