Among Men

Dunn, Stephen

Primary Category: Literature / Poetry

Genre: Poem

Annotated by:
Nixon, Lois LaCivita
  • Date of entry: Jun-09-1995


This disturbing poem describes a locker room scene in which a young man feels compelled to tell his male companions and fellow handball players, "how he did it to her and what she did to him." According to the narrator, completion of the sex act for the man depends, it seems, on such indiscreet accounts. Prior to the disclosure, the men had been self-congratulatory, saying that their game "had been terrific." Readers are left wondering what the now naked sportsmen would say; would the story be seen as another "terrific" game or would the offender be checked?


At first blush the poem doesn’t seem to fit into discussions about literature and medicine, but as we think about the overdue emergence of gender-related issues associated with healthcare, this poem provides an opportunity to discuss insensitivity and human worth.

Primary Source

Local Time


William Morrow: Quill

Place Published

New York




Dave Smith