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Unformatted text preview: A shift in Dickey's standard three-beat line departs from an expedited rhythm to a slower, more contemplative cadence in the 176 lines of "Falling," the chilling focal work of Falling, May Day Sermon, and Other Poems (1981). Long, sweeping visual images break into phrases punctuated by spaces rather than commas. Based on an actual event — the misstep of a stewardess who fell through the emergency door of a plane — the poem parcels out the deadly plunge in curiously protective stop-action shots. The strobed melodrama pictures a neatly-groomed form dressed according to airline regulations as she is altered from employee to casualty. A free flow of details honors the protagonist who dies through no fault or omission of duty. Simultaneously, like a police officer or insurance investigator, the witness examines the accident from numerous possibilities: "hung high up in the overwhelming middle of things," "a marvelous leap," and...
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This note was uploaded on 11/23/2011 for the course ENG 101 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at Texas State.
- Fall '08