I have chosen to analyze two poems by Rita Dove. The two poems I have chosen are â€œThe Bistro Styxâ€ and â€œFor Sophie, Whoâ€™ll Be in First Grade in the Year 2000â€. In both these poems we have a mother or a mother figure trying to reach out to a daughter and to a child. â€œThe Bistro Styxâ€ is an exploration of a mother/daughter relationship. Itâ€™s about a mother letting her daughter go and not being able to protect her any longer. In â€œFor Sophie, Whoâ€™ll Be in First Grade in the Year 2000â€ we have a mother figure giving advise to a child, to protect and help her in her quest of life.
In the poem â€œThe Bistro Styxâ€ we find Rita Dove working with the ideas of home life. In the beginning the mother sees that her daughter approaches looking different and the mother asks, â€œWhatâ€™s this?â€ The first notation of the difference from the child she was used to the woman that she has become. The daughter apologizes for being late, though she wasnâ€™t. This is just a way of letting her mother know that she wasnâ€™t in control anymore. Perhaps that she wasnâ€™t in fear of any anger that the mother might have. .
The second instance where we see that the mother is unhappy with what her daughter has become and she says it quite plainly with:.
â€œWe kissed. Then I leaned back to peruse.
My blighted child, this wary aristocratic mole.â€.
The words used here are â€œblightedâ€ which means something that stops growth and withers hopes and ambitions. So she is saying that her child has failed in her motherâ€™s hopes and ambitions for her. â€œThis wary aristocratic moleâ€ is the mother saying that the daughter is an untrusting mammal of nobility, as moles have dark silvery fur and her daughter is dressed in head to toe in gray. Noble meaning she is better than this.