Analyzing a Poem

On a Picture of Your House by D.G. Jones

Jessica Hogue

When losing a loved one from separation or death, certain places can sometimes remind you of that individual. The last few places a person has spent can sometimes be a great deal, mean a lot to the other and remind them of the many memories they once spent. The poem “On a Picture of Your House” by D. G. Jones is about a house and the presence of a person who is no longer in the picture. Whether that individual is alive or not does not make any difference to the effect that the poem portrays or gives its readers.
           
The poem “On a Picture of Your House” by D. G. Jones, the speaker could be a person who has an admiration and love for an individual that is no longer present in the speaker’s life. The poem is written in reference to an animatic; where there is a mystery within the poem. The mystery that the poem holds is the cause and reason why the person is no longer present. While reading, the poem does not tell its readers what caused or what reason is the person no longer present. In the poem, the speaker mentions the word “Fallen” (L12) which can either mean that the individual has died or left from the person’s life.

This piece is written in an approach that love and loss are the main themes throughout the poem.  The individual speaking is feeling a sense of loss, loneliness and seclusion while being in the house where this individual was frequently present and now left completely empty. Readers can tell that the person is missing and hoping that the individual would come back or in the case where death is involved; the spirit of the person would still linger in the house.

The poem itself allows the reader to feel the speaker’s sadness and loss wondering if he will ever be able move on. The house can be a symbol of great importance for that individual, but a home that both individuals have shared. Throughout the poem, the speaker is describing the love and affection he/she has for that person and how the house is a reminder of the life they once had. When reading the poem, readers can sense that the tone of the poem is very sad and can capture its readers and remind them of their own experience. In the poem, the house is considered to be a lot more than just a house but more of a place that carries memories instead of the person that once lived there.

For some, having a piece of what is left of a person can be of great importance and mean a lot to the other. In this poem, the house is a representation of the memories and the presence of a person who is no longer present. This poem allows its readers to feel the loss and loneliness in which the person carries within those four walls. The speaker speaks of this person in a sense that he/she is no longer present and no longer in the protection of that person within the house, “Only in extremes like that/can I protect you, touch/as lately, in your presence” (LL. 8-10). Loss can be a difficult, especially when living in a place where this person was once part of is no longer present in terms of physically being there.