MEN BY MAYA ANGELOU
‘Men’ by Maya Angelou is a poem which explores the sexual desires experienced by a young girl towards men. She had sexual desires for the men who were young, old or sharp as they walk past the street near her. It is so fascinating to see a fifteen-year-old girl watching men from the window of their house which was next to a street (Angelou, Wilson and Lagarrigue ,58) . The persona in the poem claims that men knew she was peeping through the window and they could see her lustful eyes. She says “They knew I was there” As the girl continues to exposé her lustful eyes to the men passing by she finally comes to age as she fears what might be the end product in case she meets men who she was looking at the whole day across the window. Therefore the poem Men by Maya shows how a girl has a lot of lust and when she comes to the age she realizes that being lustful to men might make her get into trouble (Angelou 44-53). As the young girl grow up the lust disappeared when she thought more about the effects of men on her.
Analysis of the Poem
The poem is commonly thought to be commenting on the relationship between men and women. First is a young girl who desires to have a sexual relationship with the men who are older than her. However, there is the dangerous part where men can destroy and trash women (Angelou, 44) .Therefore the poem is trying to explain to the young girls that men might be elegant in their looks however they are known to hurt young girls. Girls should avoid the lustful sexual desires they have for the men until they come of age. Lyman B.Hagen says “The speaker is a woman whose experience has taught her games men to play" (Hagen,24) When they will be women, they would not have the tendency of having lustful desires towards the men.
The speaker uses metaphor to explain her message to the people. The metaphor is a figure of speech whereby a word is applied to an object (Stevenson and Waite).An example of metaphors is " Wino men, old men, young men sharp as mustard" We understand that the taste of mustard is very sharp .Therefore through that, Maya wants to compare men and the taste of mustard .The men who are walking along the street as they are being looked at by the speaker as sharp. The men might be good looking and elegant in their appearance. However if the girl will taste them, she might feel the sharpness which looks like the one of mustard.
The other example of a metaphor is found at the stage where the speaker says “Their shoulders high like the breasts of the girl” Through the statement; the speaker is comparing the shoulders of men with the breast of the young girl. The two body parts simply have nothing in common .However, the body parts are proud of themselves...