Three Lunulae Truro Museum – Penelope Shuttle
Three Lunulae, Truro Museum is a poem written by Penelope Shuttle and it is written with the perspective of a person who visits a museum and views the Lunulae. The visitor, upon first seeing the Lunulae begins to imagine their history. The gender of the viewer is unknown but it seems to be a woman, given the gentle and delicate way of writing, shown through the first stanza “gold so thin, only an old woman would notice its weight”. The poem consists of 14 stanzas but varies in length probably contributing to a shift in mood and tone of the poem.
The poem begins with the description of the Lunulae as soon as the visitor walks in where they comment on the gold on the Lunulae and that it was…show more content… In stanza 5, the reference to insects’ legs is quite an odd simile to use but it conveys the fact that the clocks hand, is like and insects’ leg, quiet and unseen, almost as if it goes on unspoken till we meet our end, or when it is winter.
The next few lines only add to the intrigue of the speaker towards the object where she tries to see what others could not see. She wants to go beyond the three women’s’ faces and actually understand the story behind the Lunulae. The reference to the word “sickle shapes” along with “insects’ legs” and “thin gold remains of autumn” show the delicate and fragile imagery with a link to nature.
In stanza 9, there is a possible connection to stanza 3 and in this stanza, the women seem to be appearing in front of the speaker, almost in a ghost like form with “a face like a frost fern”. The description here is very dark and aggressive. The “Light twists in a violent retching” and this shows the manner in which the women are manifesting themselves. In contrast to what was said earlier in stanza three, it seems now that these women did have a violent past. The “dusty snakes” which are used to describe the women implies that they are very old and possess a sly character.
Towards the end, the readers understand that the custodian is about to close the museum and this