What Is The Tone Of The Poem Alone By Maya Angelou?


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As with most poems it is hard to analyze the intention of the writer as words mean different things to different people.

For example, those who feel ultimately alone may connect with this poem and feel she is writing about the sadness experienced when feeling lonely and sad. However, those with a more upbeat perspective of their own life may read it as more relating to life in general and how we need all kinds of other people to make the world work.

Societies and communities do not work without the contribution of others; no matter what one may have they cannot live or enjoy their life without others. For such a short poem, with only three main verses, Maya Angelou touches on a number of notable things. The first main theme, in verse one, is religion and a connection with the bible. The second verse focuses on what seems to be the failings in life of those who would outwardly appear to have everything; the millionaires whose lives aren't all that perfect.

They too can feel alone and they too need others in their life. The third verse then moves on to focus on differences in societies and background; using race to signify this.

Each of these verses ends with the same few lines suggesting that nobody can make it without others in the world, society, their community or even their home. This is purely my interpretation of the poem and I am certain there are hundreds of other ways in which it can be interpreted.

However, the greatest thing about poetry is that you take from it what you want. The way a person feels will result in different interpretation of the poem. Choose to interpret it in a way which will help to soothe, relax, comfort and reassure you based on your individual outlook on life.

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