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.

The Bight

 [On my birthday]

At low tide like this how sheer the water is.
White, crumbling ribs of marl protrude and glare and the boats are dry, the pilings dry as matches.
Absorbing, rather than being absorbed, the water in the bight doesn't wet anything, the color of the gas flame turned as low as possible.
One can smell it turning to gas; if one were Baudelaire one could probably hear it turning to marimba music.
The little ocher dredge at work off the end of the dock already plays the dry perfectly off-beat claves.
The birds are outsize.
Pelicans crash into this peculiar gas unnecessarily hard, it seems to me, like pickaxes, rarely coming up with anything to show for it, and going off with humorous elbowings.
Black-and-white man-of-war birds soar on impalpable drafts and open their tails like scissors on the curves or tense them like wishbones, till they tremble.
The frowsy sponge boats keep coming in with the obliging air of retrievers, bristling with jackstraw gaffs and hooks and decorated with bobbles of sponges.
There is a fence of chicken wire along the dock where, glinting like little plowshares, the blue-gray shark tails are hung up to dry for the Chinese-restaurant trade.
Some of the little white boats are still piled up against each other, or lie on their sides, stove in, and not yet salvaged, if they ever will be, from the last bad storm, like torn-open, unanswered letters.
The bight is littered with old correspondences.
Goes the dredge, and brings up a dripping jawful of marl.
All the untidy activity continues, awful but cheerful.

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

Poems are below...

Top Elizabeth Bishop Poems

Analysis and Comments on The Bight

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