Asked • 07/08/19

Why is this poem by Paul Auster entitled "Spokes"?

The poem "Spokes" by Paul Auster (of which you can read the first few verses [here](, or the whole poem [here]( if you have Jstor access) seems to be about things in nature - birds, plants, eggs. The only mention of a "hub" and "wheel" are in the third-to-last verse: > Into the hub the shell implodes, Persists in a pun of loam and rock, Rising as stick, to invade, to drive Out the babble that worded its body To emerge, to wait for future Blows-city in root, in deed, unsprung, even out Of the city. Get out. The wheel Was deception. It cannot turn. I don't really understand the meaning of this poem, either literally or metaphorically, so as a first step to increasing my comprehension and appreciation: **why is the poem called "Spokes"?** What do wheels, and their spokes and hubs, have to do with the process of nature as described in the poem?

1 Expert Answer


Joel K. answered • 08/30/19

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