Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird

Wallace Stevens



Scroll down to reveal the poem.
Use the spacebar to fill in the blank with the right word.

This website uses Skrollr to animate the fade in, fade out, and translations of most elements, however, there is some javascript that adds some elements into the skrollr program, such as stanzas 3 and 10. The reveal of the secret ending using the spacebar is done using pure javascript. Each line of script has an explanation for its use and what it does below in the source code.


Among twenty snowy mountains,
The only moving thing
Was the eye of the .

mountain mountain mountain mountain mountain mountain blackbird-face


I was of three minds,
Like a tree
In which there are three .

blackbird-standing blackbird-standing blackbird-standing


The whirled in the autumn winds.
It was a small part of the pantomime.



A man and a woman
Are one.
A man and a woman and a
Are one.

face-male face-female blackbird-soaring


I do not know which to prefer,
The beauty of inflections
Or the beauty of innuendoes,
The whistling
Or just after.

blackbird-takeoff treble music-note music-note music-note


Icicles filled the long window
With barbaric glass.
The shadow of the
Crossed it, to and fro.
The mood
Traced in the shadow
An indecipherable cause.

window blackbird-overshoulder blackbird-overshoulder-shadow


O thin men of Haddam,
Why do you imagine golden birds?
Do you not see how the
Walks around the feet
Of the women about you?



I know noble accents
And lucid, inescapable rhythms;
But I know, too,
That the is involved
In what I know.

blackbird-standing-white blackbird-takeoff-white


When the flew out of sight,
It marked the edge
Of one of many circles.



At the sight of
Flying in a green light,
Even the bawds of euphony
Would cry out sharply.


He rode over Connecticut
In a glass coach.
Once, a fear pierced him,
In that he mistook
The shadow of his equipage
For .



The river is moving.
The must be flying.

blackbird-takeoff river


It was evening all afternoon.
It was snowing
And it was going to snow.
The sat
In the cedar-limbs.

branch blackbird-landing blackbird-takeoff blackbird-standing

Did you unlock all of the blackbirds?

About Wallace Stevens

Wallace Stevens

Bio from Wikipedia

Wallace Stevens (October 2, 1879 – August 2, 1955) was an American Modernist poet. He was born in Reading, Pennsylvania, educated at Harvard and then New York Law School, and he spent most of his life working as an executive for an insurance company in Hartford, Connecticut. He won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for his Collected Poems in 1955.

Some of his best-known poems include: