ADVANTAGES

But after what we might call its initial "Guernica effect" had worn offsomewhat, "Daddy" was also subjected to some hard questions as critics began towonder whether its satanic imagery is meaningful, whether, for example, lines like"With your Luftwaffe, your gobbledygoo" or "Not God but a swastika / Soblack no sky could squeak through" are more than fairly cheap shots, demanding astock response from the reader. Indeed, both the Nazi allegory and the Freudian drama oftrying to die so as to "get back, back, back to you" can now be seen as devicesdesigned to camouflage the real thrust of the poem, which is, like "Purdah," acall for revenge against the deceiving husband. For the real enemy is less Daddy ("Iwas ten when they buried you")--a Daddy who, in real life, had not the slightest Naziconnection--than the model made by the poet herself in her father's image:

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