Though on the surface, the poem seems to suggest a practical validation of the male superiority in the relationship under consideration, yet the underlying currents in the poem reveal a woman’s inherent superiority and finesse in the handling of love relationships. The woman in the poem is approaching the relationship with a sense of pragmatism and is well aware of the necessity of letting her male counterpart feel superior in this battle of the sexes.
The monologue begins with the woman’s request for a cessation of the ongoing contention. She is intuitively aware of the fact that their quarrel has reached a precarious situation where sharp words could jeopardize the entire relationship. Ant further perusal of the logical arguments will only do an irreparable damage to the relationship. Her instinct nudges her to revert back to the agreed upon status quo so as to give the relationship a chance. Thus she yearns to drop reasoning in the favor of more fundamental and basic sensual and physical modes of communication. She in fact encourages her husband to subside to his conventional role.
In this very instance of submission lies the astuteness of the woman in the sense that by succumbing to her conventional role as a woman, she is tacitly provoking her husband to do the same. As the dramatic action gets more intense and as her tone gets more submissive, superficially pointing to her unquestioning allegiance to her role, the sense of power that she commands in the relationship gets more discernable and apparent. Hence it gets really difficult to detect who is exercising the real control in the relationship.
Therefore the title of the poem ‘A Woman’s Last Word’ presents a situation of ambiguity. Perhaps the woman in the poem has given up before the overpowering stature of her partner, or perhaps it is she who had the last word in the confrontation, considering the way she way she