“recast in our image”: Lisel Mueller’s “Things”

Mueller_ThingsI like naming things; maybe you do, too. I have a velvet chair named Daisy (it was my friend’s chair first; when she was young it was orange, but now it’s faded to a golden yellow), and once we had fish named Dunder, Mifflin, Don Draper, Giles, and Admiral Ackbar.

Lisel Mueller’s poem “Things” points out the ways in which, over time, we’ve named parts of objects after ourselves. It reminds me a bit of Heather McHugh’s poem “Etymological Dirge” in the way it offers us a new way to think about words we use every day.

What’s your favorite poem about an everyday object?

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