By Dr Oliver Tearle (Loughborough University)
‘What My Child Learns of the Sea’ is a 1963 poem by the African-American poet Audre Lorde (1934-92), which was later included in her 1968 collection The First Cities. Lorde was a self-described ‘Black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet.’
Lorde wrote ‘What My Child Learns of the Sea’ when her daughter, Elizabeth, was just one year old. Let’s summarise the poem’s content before offering an analysis of its meaning.