Analysis of Carole Satyamurti's Poem, I Shall Paint My Nails Red

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“I Shall Paint My Nails Red” by Carole Satyamurti, writes about how red nails show a bold statement about a simple woman. The color red is interpreted in poetry as a figure of speech for passion, anger and strong emotions. Satyamurti is suggesting that women who paint their nails red are trying to seek attention from the world. She uses different relationships to the women: her daughter, her lover, and the society and tell how they would react to red nails. The first word in every line starts with “Because”, why would she repeat this word ten times? She might be trying to give a good enough reason why she is painting her nails red maybe because she is a woman.
The opening of the poem the woman is explaining why painting her nails red
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In lines 3-4 of the poem, Satyamurti points to the theme of strength and empowerment in women. The woman is re-assuring us her gender identity of why she paints her nails red “Because it will remind me I’m a woman”(3). She is declaring that being a woman means being bold. “Because I will look like a survivor” (4) the woman in the poem is also recognizes that women in general possess strength of distinctive characters. When she mentions being a survivor is seems as though she has tackled many things in life, which women do by: giving birth, being a mother, being a wife.
In lines 5-7 she begins to show an insight in her personal life of why she will paint her nails red. She wants to paint them “Because I can admire them in traffic jams”, we wonder where she is going that makes her paint her nails red- party, school function, or work? Then in line 6 she gives another reason why she will paint her nails red “Because my daughter will say ugh”. Her daughter may be a teenager, who understands about make-up and dressing up. She is saying “Ugh” because it is her mom, and he sees her mom as an old person who should not paint nails a bizarre, bright color like red. The woman obviously has a significant other, but we do not know who, the gender, or the age. She wants to paint her nails red “Because my lover will be surprised”- she wants to paint her nails red because her relationship maybe dull, she wants to spice it up.
In lines 8-10 she
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