‘August, Los Angeles, Lullaby’ by Carol Muske-Dukes is a contemporary poem about bringing life into the world and the worries that plague a mother after giving birth.
There is a definitely a degree of confusion in this poem as the speaker tries to understand what happens next, and how to be optimistic, after the birth of her daughter.
The pure amnesia of her face,
newborn. I looked so far
into her that, for a while,
‘A name trimmed with colored ribbons’ by Lyn Hejinian is a Language Poem that requires the listener to use their imagination and creativity to reconstruct and interpret the poet’s childhood fantasies.
'A name trimmed with colored ribbons' is an intentionally challenging and confusing poem. Using its shifting point of view and semi-incoherent perspective, it forces the listener to create an imaginary world, fusing the speaker's childhood with the present-day reader's perspective.
A name trimmed They are seated in the shadows
with colored husking corn, shelling peas. Houses
ribbons of wood set in the ground. I try to
‘Marriage’ by Gregory Corso is a humorous and interesting poem about the pros and cons of getting married and everything that comes with it, like having children.
Confusion is certainly the most prominent emotion felt in this poem. The speaker is entirely consumed by the pros and cons of getting married or staying single. He goes back and forth between options several times.
Should I get married? Should I be good?
Astound the girl next door with my velvet suit and faustus hood?
Don't take her to movies but to cemeteries
tell all about werewolf bathtubs and forked clarinets
‘Sunlight on the Garden’ by Louis MacNeice is a poem about change, death, and accepting that life eventually ends.
There is an element of confusion as the poet struggles with what his life is like now.
The sunlight on the garden
Hardens and grows cold,
We cannot cage the minute
Within its nets of gold;
‘The Fish’ by Elizabeth Bishop is considered to be one of her best poems. In it, readers can find some clues about her personal life.
There is no overt confusion in this poem, but the speaker's mixed emotions towards the fish - initially wanting to catch it for sport, but then admiring its strength and beauty - could be seen as a form of inner confusion or conflict.
I caught a tremendous fish
and held him beside the boat
half out of water, with my hook
fast in a corner of his mouth.
He didn't fight.
‘Please Mrs. Butler’ by Allan Ahlberg is a children’s poem that conveys a frustrating and purposeless conversation between a student and their teacher.
The student no doubt feels confused by their teacher's response to their issues.
Please Mrs Butler
This boy Derek Drew
Keeps copying my work, Miss.
What shall I do?