Mar 18 2012


Published by at 2:49 am under Uncategorized

The shop in Havana is dust

And the Irish cotton is dust

And my father, a dusty Jew

Day after day, each day comes home with a loaf of bred beneath his arm

Day after day, each day alike…. (Kozer 1242)

The term “diaspora” refers to the movement or migration of people scattering away from their homeland. In this poem the speaker talks about the Jewish people being spread around the world and in particular this family living in Havana, Cuba. The speakers father seems to own a shop in Havana and he refers to the shop as dust and he refers to his father as “a dusty Jew”. The speaker talks about how his lifestyle is quite dull living in the home and how each day seems to be the same repetitive routine.  The speaker refers to his life as being dull and boring living in the house, for instance, he states “day after day, each day alike”, this quote shows how the speaker’s life is dull and boring with no excitement to fill the hours of his day because he already expects to know what will happen because he is so use to the routine that his family follows and always expects his father to come home from his shop and expects his mother to do the same chores around the house.

No flower to ever be seen in any bedroom.

All the shops in Havana have closed,

The workers, in a noisy fever, file through the streets… (Kozer 1242)

This quote gives the reader the idea that the speaker’s household is very dull and bland looking on the inside. It compares the idea of what the inside of the household was like to the outside town after the shops close up for the night.  The speaker describes the house as being very plain and simple with little decorations around the rooms. He describes how “all the shops in Havana have closed” which allows us to create a visual of the quiet town and how all the workers are rushing home through the town creating a busy atmosphere with a lot of noise and traffic in the streets. He describes this moment as a “noisy fever” meaning that the surrounding outside is more exciting then what is going on in the dull, boring household that he experiences day in and day out.



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