Gwendolyn Brooks is a Noble Prize winning poet, and she has also worked hard in efforts to gain more support and advancement opportunities for African Americans. She was the publicity director for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in Chicago while she attended and graduated from Wilson Junior College. Brooks also succeeded Carl Sandburg as poet laureate of Illinois. With her poem “Annie Allen,” Brooks became the first African American woman to win the Nobel Prize. Published in 1945, “Sadie and Maud” was another famous poem that reflected the times in which Brooks grew up. During the 40's and 50's, women across America were torn between choosing a simple domestic life and having a career. Brooks' take on this controversial topic is apparent in the poem Sadie and Maud. If the reader looks closely at the tone, concepts, and figure of speech in this poem he or she can understand the meaning of the poem rather easily. The major theme can be described in the Latin phrase “carpe diem,” which means “seize the day,” so in other words a person should live everyday as if its their last.
The persona of this poem is a third person that knows or knows of Sadie and Maud and their life growing up. The tone, or attitude of the poet, starts out very straight forward and objective while the persona speaks of Sadie and Maud growing up; however, in the final stanza, you can sense the tone becoming more sympathetic towards Sadie since she was ridiculed for her lifestyle, yet Maud is the one that is all alone. The diction in the poem is simple and informal because of its word choice and sentence structure.
There are two metaphors in this poem that let you know a lot about the major theme of the “Sadie and Maud.” “Sadie scraped life / with a fine tooth comb” (3-4)
describes her lifestyle which was to live early day to its fullest and to not worry about what others think. Sadie live