Analysis of "Power" by Audre Lorde

1546 Words Sep 20th, 2013 7 Pages
The Use of “Power”

“They killed my son in cold blood,” lamented Eloise Armstead. Her husband, Add Armstead, was traveling to work with a companion on Saturday evening in the early 1970s. Thomas Shea and Walter Scott, responding to a call about a cabby that was robbed earlier that day, used this opportunity to rid the world of the wicked and gain a victory for the righteous. Walking along New York Blvd. in South Jamaica, Queens, Shea and his partner pulled alongside the two. Armstead says, as he recalls the incident, “We were walking, not saying anything to each other, and this car pulls up, and this white fella opens the door with a gun.” To him and his companion it looked like they were going to be robbed, so they ran. As the gunshots
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Webster defines poetry as literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style and rhythm. Rhetoric is only the art of writing and speaking effectively while poetry is the art of speaking emotionally and freely. Lorde says that poetry is to killing yourself as rhetoric is to killing your children. The first lines of the poem is Lorde calling the readers to action, and telling them to put their children first. Feeling fury over the case against Thomas Shea, in the first stanza, in the first four lines of the poem, Lorde tells us that it doesn’t matter the crime or the race, children must come before hatred. She emphasizes on this in the next stanza.
In the second stanza, Lorde paints the streets of New York in a grim image. “I am trapped on a desert of raw gunshot wounds…” This line could also mean that Lorde feels trapped in a society ruled by white male supremacy (the desert) that is still ongoing with no end in sight (raw gunshot wounds). This meaning is more probable because Lorde emphasizes in lines 11 and 12 of the second stanza “as it [the blood] sinks into the whiteness of the desert…” Next, Lorde makes her call for revenge for the brutality of Clifford Glover. She says that Glover is “…a dead child dragging his shattered black face off the edge of my sleep…” and that “…blood from his punctured cheeks and shoulders is the only liquid for miles…” Her “stomach churns” at