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So who's good at understanding Poetry, cause I know I'm not. Little help please :)

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Link fixed in the comments.

Ok, so I basically I just don't understand the meaning of the poem.

Did he emigrate to america and thats why he doesn't feel any family ties, or is he looking at the boarder between Mexica and America. The last line really throws me off.

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Link's not working :(

I saw, I'm trying to figure it out :( Ugh

highlight the words, and the link button will activate.  then paste in the address.

The name is family ties?  Who's the author?

Jimmy Baca.

I tried to do the highlighting of the word but it still wasn't going through. I think it may just be the address of the link.

fixed the link for you


I guess I'm just computer illiterate ies-by-jimmy-santiago-baca.html

I couldn't find the poem. =( But I did find this brief explanation.

Could you just copy and paste the poem?


Was that the right poem, or is the correct poem on a different page?


Just let me say, I'm really impressed by how many people are eager and willing to help.

My faith in mankind is momentarily restored!

That was the right one :)

Haha I am impressed too.

Original Post by splitrail:


Just let me say, I'm really impressed by how many people are eager and willing to help.

My faith in mankind is momentarily restored!

I can fix that too. Google "paris hilton" +bff

As for what that poem means to me:

The author is talking about how people grow apart, living in different locations, cultures and even economic classes.

He can't find a connection to his extended family, perhaps he knows them, but he doesn't understand them, because their lives are so far removed. (edit: and vice versa)

Throughout he marvels at it all, taking it in, but constantly refocuses on what he does understand, his own fledgling family and their problems.

I think he's primarily talking about how he finds more comfort and family in nature than in his actual family (not his wife and kids, per se, but his aunts, uncles, siblings, etc.) He feels more tied to nature than familial ties.

I think he is also upset by the fact that people have to own land instead of just being able to go out into nature. He mentions he can't afford a place like the river, and that people get angry about land grant issues. He clearly longs for there to be no more "no tresspassing" signs.

Thanks guys, that helps a lot.

I really appreciate your input.

I think the no trespassing sign references not only land, but also the way he feels cut off from his aunts, uncles, cousins, etc.; as if they are on one side of a divide and he on the other.

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No I wouldn't say so much it is national, more the connection between the man and his family and the land.

In the beginning he describes the Aunts as trees and the children as rivers, tying them to the positive natural imagery that is prevalent in the poem. So it isn't that he feels disconnected to his family.

Conflict is shown when he is inside; mounted elk head (a hunter's trophy and something that goes against nature / natural) and arguments over who possesses the land. Here is where he feels separate from his kin. When they act outside the natural and start imposing their will on the land

The tone changes again when he goes outside with his family and he describes the pastoral beauty that is between his family and the natural world.

These ruminations are broken by the abrupt statement that he can't afford to let his family go to a place like this because of the man made concept of land ownership. This fact is then replayed for a poignant affect as they drive away, his sons dreaming of the fields and the man saddened by the No Trespassing signs.

At least that's how I see it. Family is natural and tied to nature. When the family starts imposing their will on nature, he feels disconnected because of the conflict. Something like that

the analyses from tincognito and owlet are spot on.  you guys better watch out - english 101 folks are going to start stalking you! 

After reading up on Baca, I think people are overplaying the role of the environment in this poem; it's not unimportant because he likes to set the stage so to speak, but he writes about family (including nontraditional families, like gangs, neighborhoods, the barrio, etc) bonds and socio-economic issues.

I think owlet got it more correct than I, although I am a communications major. Just because he typically doesn't talk about environment doesn't mean he's not choosing to focus on it in this piece, ignayshus. I'm sure he's not entirely a one trick pony, although he clearly has is main theme in there.

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