Poetry Forum Areas

Introduce Yourself

New to PoetrySoup? Introduce yourself here. Tell us something about yourself.

Looking for a Poem

Can't find a poem you've read before? Looking for a poem for a special person or an occasion? Ask other member for help.

Writing Poetry

Ways to improve your poetry. Post your techniques, tips, and creative ideas how to write better.

High Critique

For poets who want unrestricted constructive criticism. This is NOT a vanity workshop. If you do not want your poem seriously critiqued, do not post here. Constructive criticism only. PLEASE Only Post One Poem a Day!!!

How do I...?

Ask PoetrySoup Members how to do something or find something on PoetrySoup.


You have an ad blocker! We understand, but...

PoetrySoup is a small privately owned website. Our means of support comes from advertising revenue. We want to keep PoetrySoup alive, make it better, and keep it free. Please support us by disabling your ad blocker on PoetrySoup. See how to enable ads while keeping your ad blocker active. Also, did you know you can become a PoetrySoup Lifetime Premium Member and block ads forever...while getting many more great features. Take a look! Thank you!

The Map

by
 Land lies in water; it is shadowed green.
Shadows, or are they shallows, at its edges showing the line of long sea-weeded ledges where weeds hang to the simple blue from green.
Or does the land lean down to lift the sea from under, drawing it unperturbed around itself? Along the fine tan sandy shelf is the land tugging at the sea from under? The shadow of Newfoundland lies flat and still.
Labrador's yellow, where the moony Eskimo has oiled it.
We can stroke these lovely bays, under a glass as if they were expected to blossom, or as if to provide a clean cage for invisible fish.
The names of seashore towns run out to sea, the names of cities cross the neighboring mountains --the printer here experiencing the same excitement as when emotion too far exceeds its cause.
These peninsulas take the water between thumb and finger like women feeling for the smoothness of yard-goods.
Mapped waters are more quiet than the land is, lending the land their waves' own conformation: and Norway's hare runs south in agitation, profiles investigate the sea, where land is.
Are they assigned, or can the countries pick their colors? --What suits the character or the native waters best.
Topography displays no favorites; North's as near as West.
More delicate than the historians' are the map-makers' colors.

Poem by
Biography | Poems | Best Poems | Short Poems | Quotes | Email Poem - The MapEmail Poem | Create an image from this poem

Poems are below...


Top Elizabeth Bishop Poems

Analysis and Comments on The Map

Provide your analysis, explanation, meaning, interpretation, and comments on the poem The Map here.