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Simple Summary Of The Fence By Lenrie Peters

According to an intelectual source, "The poem is a moral one which deals with the poet's dillema. He recounts the "dim" past and juxtaposes it with the future. The future is misty and foggy, and for this reason, he cannot possibly guess what the future looks like, neither can the past proffer any solution.

In line 10-12, the poet recalls another striking phenomenon which is a contributing factor to the problem he is facing. This time, it is no longer time, but "age".

Indeed he is so weighed down, that he is forced to confess that "I have not been drinking", yet he "feels the buoyant waves". Invariably these reactions in his body make him stagger.

In line 20, the poet opines and acknowledges that he is still at his wits end. He still finds it extremely difficult to decide which way to follow, whether to be involved in "doing good" or otherwise.

He is neither for, nor against. He is only but a "fence sitter" signifying his dilemma."

The Poem:-
There where the dim past and future mingle
their nebulous and aspirations
there I lie
There where truth and untruth struggle,
In endless and bloody combat,
there I lie
There where time moves forwards and backwards
with not one moment's pause for sighing
there I lie
There where the body ages relentlessly
and only the feeble mind can wander back
there I lie in open_
souled amazement,
There where all the opposites arrive
to plague the inner senses, but do not fuse,
I hold my head; and then contrive
to stop the constant motion
My head goes round and round;
But I have not been drinking
I feel the buoyant wave; I stagger
It seems the world has changed her garment
but it is I who have not crossed the fence,
So there I lie
There where the need for good
and the "doing good" conflict
there I lie.

Copyright (c) Lenrie Peters


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