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I really enjoyed this poem, and i think your analysis is very good. Death has a different impression on everyone, and I would say most people take it pretty hard. I like how you note that Marilyn Monore is never actually mentioned in the poem, but clearly whoever died made quite an impression on those who tended to her dead body. I would agree that the underlying theme is dealing with death and the reality that it will eventually take hold of everyone.

I think you are absolutely right about the meaning of the poem and about the last line. "To hear her living when he had to struggle with death."
My only problem with this poem is.. why did this one death have such an effect? Isn't it the job of these men to deal with cadavers?
This poem feeds my anger about the fact that more people would care about the death of a pop star than they would if a friend of mine died. Gee, in this world, more might care about a pop star than a civilization being victims of genocide.
Although, this way of thinking can't be escaped.
But your explanation gave me hope. You pointed out that the poem never stated Monroe's name, and that made me go, "Ooooh, hmmm." Your idea for the meaning ("the reality of death") is beautiful.

I think this poem is humanizing celebrities. Celebrities are often cast by the media and twelve year old girls as demi-gods that are larger than life, but they are human as you or I. I think the poet chooses to analyze her death because death is the most human thing. Every human being, famous or not famous, will have to experience death and there is no VIP death for her to experience despite her celebrity status.

Hmm.. *taps chin* Well, Joe, I think you should rewrite this poem. I'd like to read a poem that humanizes celebrities by showing how they are the same in death.

However, I think that this poem is doing the opposite, and that is why it irritates me. Why does her death affect these "ambulance men" so much? They are "never the same." Her death affected them more than all the other deaths they had to handle. Why? Because she's a celebrity.

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