Essay - James Wright's 'A Blessing' is a Poem that Celebrates the...


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James Wright's "A Blessing" is a poem that celebrates the wonders of nature, particularly ***** animal world, and expresses the poet's strong desire to become one with ***** world - ***** the extent of, at least momentarily, leaving the human world behind.

The poem begins with a fairly straightforward description ***** a c*****r ride: "Just off the highway to Rochester, Minnesota, / Twilight bounds softly forth on the grass." Right away, it becomes apparent that ***** poet has left the world of human civilization behind, as his immediate observations are taken up with nature; he is clearly more interested in ***** twilight on the grass than he ***** ***** ***** highway, and the rest of the poem will be taken ***** with evocations of nature, the "here ***** now," rather ***** the place from which the poem just came. This effectively gives ***** poem a feeling of placelessness, of being situated somewhere outside of time, where the only thing that truly matters is what happens in each line ***** the short poem.

Upon arriving at this isolated stretch, a place ***** is never explicitly named, as ***** arrival *****ly gives r*****e to description, the poet and his friend ***** met by two Indian ponies:

They have come gladly out of ***** *****ows

To welcome my friend ***** me.

We step over the barbed wire into ***** pasture

Where they have been grazing all day, al*****.

Upon *****ping "over the barbed wire" and into the pasture, ***** poet and his ***** are effectively leaving the human world behind ***** symbolized by the ***** wire, an industrially produced product - ***** into the wilds ***** nature - the pasture ***** ***** ***** Indi***** ponies graze.

The poet goes on to describe the ponies' happiness upon making contact with *****ir human visitors: "They bow shyly as wet swans. They love each other. / There is no loneliness like theirs."

***** last line is particularly curious. For, if the ponies ***** one another for company, and clearly love one another, as the poet asserts, then why are they simultaneously lonely?

It seems that ***** question finds its answer in the following line: "At home once *****..." As ***** ***** certainly have not gone anywhere, the only reason ***** ***** are now "at *****," whereas before they were not, ***** because their two human friends have come to visit them. The implication, then, is that the ponies, despite having one a*****her, will always be ***** without human companionship. This is why "there is no ***** like theirs," to quote Wright - theirs, in other words, is a peculi*****r k*****d of lone*****ss ***** exceeds the human definition of loneliness.

The second half ***** the ***** is dedicated to the poet's desire to make physical contact with one of the *****:

would like ***** hold the slenderer one in my arms,

For she has walked over to me

***** nuzzled my left h*****.

In many ways, the second half of the poem solves the ********** of the

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