Sharks' Teeth

By: Kay Ryan

Kay Ryan

Kay Ryan is often compared to Emily Dickinson and Marianne Moore because of her "tightly compressed, rhythmically dense poetry". Ryan describes her poetry as starting "the way an oyster does, with an aggravation," instead of with imagery and sound. Being the recipient of several major awards, Ryan is known as one of the greatest living American poets.

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/bio/kay-ryan

Sharks' Teeth

By: Kay Ryan

Everything contains some

silence. Noise gets

its zest from the

small shark's-tooth

shaped fragments

of rest angled

in it. An hour

of city holds maybe

a minute of these

remnants of a time

when silence reigned,

compact and dangerous

as a shark. Sometimes

a bit of a tail

or fin can still

be sensed in parks.


Interpretation:

"Everything contains some silence."

  • Interpretation: All things in the world have moments of quietude.


"Noise gets its zest from the small shark's-tooth shaped fragments of rest angled in it."

  • Interpretation: Without silence, noise would be monotonous. The small breaks of silence within times of noise is what gives noise its energy.


" An hour of city holds maybe a minute of these remnants of a time when silence reigned, compact and dangerous as a shark."

  • Interpretation: Silence comes in smaller amounts when compared to sound, and is often not recognized until it is upon a person, like a shark is undetected by its prey until it is overpowering them.


"Sometimes a bit of a tail or fin can still be sensed in parks.

  • Interpretation: Silence still can be felt even when noise is resonating throughout the world.


http://www.ashokkarra.com/2008/12/sharks-teeth-by-kay-ryan/

Theme

The theme of Sharks' Teeth by Kay Ryan is how silence is still eminent in a fast paced world. Just like a shark, silence strikes in brief, faint intervals. Silence is what makes noise so refined; all noise, like music and speech, would be torture without breaks of silence.
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Shark's Teeth
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