Sharks' Teeth

By Kay Ryan

Sharks' Teeth

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

About Kay Ryan

Kay Ryan was born on September 21st, 1945 in San Jose, California. Kay is the author of many books and poems and is often compared to Emily Dickinson and Marianne Moore. Kay Ryan grew up in many small towns including San Joaquin Valley and the Mojave Desert. She received a bachelor's and a Master's degree from UCLA.

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Interpretation of "Sharks' Teeth"

The first stanza of the poem has two very interesting lines in it. First the author states that everything contains silence. Many wonder how noise contains silence, but then Kay Ryan says in lines two through seven where ''noise gets'' its "zest''. The author says the ''rest'' in the ''noise'' is where ''noise'' gets its "zest". Many interpret this poem in many ways, this is the most common interpretation.
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Theme of ''Sharks' Teeth''

The theme of ''Sharks' Teeth'' by Kay Ryan is to pay attention and stay aware in your life. In her poem Kay Ryan said ''remnants of time when silence reigned, compact and dangerous as a shark.'' (10-13). This means time can be dangerous like a shark because it can sneak up on you and be very damaging if you do not pay attention and be alert,
Shark's Teeth
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