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Sous-entendu, by Anne Stevenson

Sous-entendu, by Anne Stevenson is a short poem, with a powerful message that isn’t quite clear to readers. The title itself is French for, “hidden meaning” or “implication”. “It describes something left unsaid but assumed to be understood” (939). It is written from a women’s point of view, on how we interpret the way men look at us. The narrator is speaking to men in general, not necessarily directing the poem at one specific man. Her words portray an extremely strong and intelligent woman, describing how women aren’t nearly as naïve as some men may think. To her, and her experience, it seems to have become something she’s quite familiar with, and she seems to know how to handle the…