Thursday, September 16, 2010
After we discussed this poem in class, I'll admit that it made much more sense to me than I made of it on my own. However, I am still not the biggest fan of Margaret Atwood's piece entitled "February". Personally, I found the poem to be quite conflicting and contradictory. The author criticized society for reproducing, comparing people to other animals and reducing them to the level of mere territorial house cats. She even went as far as to suggest that "Some cat owners around here should snip a few testicles. If we wise hominids were sensible, we'd do that too, or eat our young, like sharks." I'm sorry, but what? I felt like that suggestion went a little far. Comments such as that one led me to believe that perhaps Atwood was a feminist and did not agree with men's territorial nature. In general, the entire tone of the poem was negative and grumpy. This was one part of the poem that I could agree with based on the time of year. In the wintertime, people seem to be more inclined to want to be by themselves and not want to get up and do anything. Maybe it has something to do with the cold weather, but I can definitely relate to not wanting to leave my warm and cozy bed on frigid February mornings. I also thought it was ironic how she referenced the month of February as the "month of despair" because of the presence of Valentine's Day. I always find it interesting to see who enjoys and who hates that holiday each year because people's opinions are so varied. Apparently, the speaker is not too enraptured with the concept because she doesn't have someone to spend it with. At the end, I initially found it conflicting that she advised the audience to "Get rid of death. Celebrate increase. Make it be spring." This seemed completely contradictory to me from her earlier advice to stop procreating. Consequently, after it was discussed in class, it made more sense to me that she was advising the readers to get up and go do something about their unhappiness and get out of bed. I liked how she ended on a positive note after a predominantly negative poem.