by Robert Morgan
alternative, "option", to the latent conflict.
Morgan, asserts the layout of the groundhog den "always has a back door", and in doing so
introduces the option to conflict. The vocabulary, "confronted", used to herald the terrier’s
presence, suggests the potential for conflict. The tone the speaker uses with the word "tearing" in
the line "Tearing at the aproned entrance" confirms the potential for violence.
When the woodchuck exits out the back, the poet utilizes the "option" inherent in the den to allow
rhetoric could imply the choice is cowardly. However, in the following lines the speaker asserts
7 and 8, "prisoner or martyr in his own burrow."
respectfully terming it "deniability". It is interesting to note the poet never refers to the
imply a disrespectful slant if analyzed out of context.
The poet in closing refers to the option taken by the groundhog as "the alibi of absence" and in
doing so, posits the action as a plausible defense. The poet’s choice of vocabulary for the
conclusion provides convincing support and approval for the utility of clever retreat and
evasivesness, the "option".