The Day

Geoffrey Brock

About Geoffrey Brock

  1. Brock was born in Atlanta on October 19, 1964. He grew up in Tallahassee FL, and has lived in Italy, Philadelphia, Washington DC, Gainesville FL, Overland Park KS, Dallas, San Francisco, and Tucson. He earned a PhD in comparative literature from the University of Pennsylvania, an MFA in poetry from the University of Florida, and was a Wallace Stegner fellow at Stanford from 2002–2004. Since 2006 he has taught in the arkansas Programs in Creative Writing & Translations in Fayetteville, where he lives with his wife, the novelist Padma Viswanathan, and their two children.


It hangs on its

stem like a plum

at the edge of a

darkening thicket.

It’s swelling and

blushing and ripe

and I reach out a

hand to pick it

but flesh moves

slow through time

and evening

comes on fast

and just when I

think my fingers

might seize that

sweetness at last

the gentlest of

breezes rises

and the plum lets

go of the stem.

And now it’s my

fingers ripening

and evening that’s

reaching for them.

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Online Version

Meaning of The Poem

This poem is comparing the day like a growing plum, describing how luscious and enticing a growing plum looks, while at the same time describing the beauty of the start of the day. However the speaker then compares the span of a day to a plum, explaining how the shelf life of the fruit is longer than a day. Considering the shortness of a day, the speaker describes their grasp of the plum. Finally, before the speaker even has the opportunity to withhold the plum or, seize the day, the evening already begins and the speaker's hands slowly age while awaiting the start of a new day.


The overall theme of this poem is about how people should pursue their day or their life to the fullest and take extreme advantage of it because before you may even realize it, time will be winding down and the day or your lifespan will be over.

Poetic Devices

Form- 6 Stanzas; 24 lines
Imagery- Image of a growing and picking of a plum.
Figurative Language- "it hangs on its stem like a plum" (line 1) - Simile
"...seize that sweetness..." (line 15-16) - Alliteration
"...even that's reaching for them" (line 23-24) - Personification
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