11/01 Direct Link
Kate Chopin's, "The Story of an Hour," is written with iorny. In the beginning of the story it is revealed that Mrs. Mallard has some kind of heart trouble. When she is told of her husbands death she realizes that she has new found freedom. Then Mrs. Mallards husband comes walking through the front door. It turns out he did not die. At the sight of her husband alive, Mrs. Mallard drops dead. The doctors say that she ended up dying, "of heart disease - of joy that kills." The iorny used in this story truly makes it a great read.
11/02 Direct Link
It is imperative to respect the work when analyzing literature and movies. It can be tempting to assign one's own meaning, instead of focusing on what is actually proven by the piece. In order for the interpretation to be correct it must be substantiated with proof taken directly from the text. The four basic steps for interpretation are finding out more about the author, looking for clues in the text, determining the context, and most importantly, respecting the work. The more an analysis strays from the piece itself in their investigation, the more likely their interpretation will not be accurate.
11/03 Direct Link
I usually prefer stories that have happy endings. I like to be left with a feeling of satisfaction. Life is too complicated as it is. I read for entertainment or for information (like a cookbook). I do not want to feel depressed after reading a book. However, I do not like cheesy formula stories such as, "A Secret Sorrow," by Van Der Zee. Faye, the main character, is completely pathetic! I want to be able to respect and relate to the main character (unless the story is a comedy). I don't understand how anyone could be entertained by Zee's drivel.
11/04 Direct Link
More men should read, "My Mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun," by William Shakespeare. Some poetry, like today's advertising, portrays women unrealistically. Most writers tend to paint a picture of a physically beautiful woman. She is usually slender and has soft flawless hair and skin. These writers think that beauty is perfection, when in fact beauty can be found in imperfections. If men could learn this than maybe they would have more fulfilling relationships. Also if you see someone for who they really are inside, I think you are more likely to not end up with a broken heart.
11/05 Direct Link
In the short story, "A Rose for Emily," William Faulkner writes all of the scenes out of order. This adds interest and forces his audience to think more and be more active participants in the story. The readers must piece together the bits of information that they find like a puzzle. By telling the conclusion first, Faulkner creates suspense that pulls the readers into the story and makes them want to keep reading so they can figure out how everything all adds up in the end. Faulkner uses this technique very effectively and makes this story a very enjoyable read.
11/06 Direct Link
It is such an amazing thing, that love can live on after life through art and literature. William Shakespeare talks about this in his poem, "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" He says that his poem gives life to the one that he loves as long as people are around to read it. It's true that people have pondered the subject of his poem long since they both have died. This idea of love living on makes the gesture (dedicating literature or art to the one that you love) so delightful and romantic. How flattering it must feel!
11/07 Direct Link
It takes massive amounts of courage to be creative. You must put some of yourself on display. If you are not courageous you will be scared to invest yourself and your work will not be original. Rollo May talks about this in the book, "The Courage To Create." He says, "if you do not express your own original ideas, if you do not listen to your own being, you will have betrayed yourself. Also you will have betrayed our community in failing to make your contribution to the whole." Society will miss out on what you, uniquely, have to offer.
11/08 Direct Link
In Robert Browning's poem, "My Last Duchess," the Duke is speaking to a representative sent by the Count. The representative is supposed to try to find out if he thinks the Count's daughter and the Duke should get married. Of coarse the representative realizes that the Duke is crazy and leaves. It is wild that the Duke thinks he can brag about killing his other wife because she smiled too much and then expect to be allowed to marry the daughter of the Count. Actually, not only marry her but get a dowry to marry her! He extremely very arrogant!
11/09 Direct Link
In the short story "A & P," John Updike mentions the idea that life is more difficult for those that stand up for what they believe is right. This is very true because we have make sacrifices to stick to what we believe. My uncle got fired from his job as a car salesman because he wouldn't tell the lies that his boss wanted him to tell. This resulted in his family being very poor for a while until he was able to find a new job. A lot of the time, life is just not fair to good people.
11/10 Direct Link
I think that the use of second person point of view can be extremely effective when suitable. Susan Minot uses it in her short story "Lust." It really helps pull the readers into the story and it makes it easier for them relate to the main character. It is important that readers can relate because then there is a chance they might be able to learn from her mistakes. The message becomes a lot more powerful and valuable when you can think about it in terms of yourself. I am surprised that writers do not use this technique more often.
11/11 Direct Link
In the poem, "she being Brand," e.e. cumming's skillfully lays the words out so that they highlight the rising action and climax. Knowing the intended climax helps you read the poem aloud because you understand where to use your voice to emphasize the text. The varying length of the lines and the syntax of the poem also help to convey the underlined meaning (sex). If it was not for cumming's incredible talent you might not grasp that he is not only talking about driving a car for the first time. It is amazing what you can convey without actually saying.
11/12 Direct Link
In the poem, "Sex without Love," Sharon Olds discusses the idea that people are all inevitably alone throughout life. I do not agree with this at all. I do think, though, that it is hard to have and accept something if you do not believe that it is possible. If you do not believe that you can have an eternal connection with someone, then how could you recognize it and embrace it? Reality is relative because one person believes in different things than the next person dose. For this reason what one person reveres, another person may view with pity.
11/13 Direct Link
When a reader first skims through William Butler Yeats' poem "The Second Coming," they might think that it is about the apocalypse, but I do not think that this is the case. Nowhere in this poem dose it talk about the end of the world. Yeats is talking about the world entering a new phase. The world is full of sin and man (the falcon) can not hear God (the falconer). A sphinx awakens and "what rough beast, its hour come round at last." It is ready to pounce on Bethlehem. Evil is starting a new age on the earth.
11/14 Direct Link
In the poem "The Red Wheelbarrow," William Carlos Williams paints a picture with words. The poem is very simplistic and easy to read, yet it draws you in. It makes you picture this important wheelbarrow. I think this poem has a very artistic feel with the contrast in colors of the red wheelbarrow and of the white chicken and the use of the word glazed. It reminds me of an artist choosing colors for a painting and you get to see how everything comes together. Each element complements the others and they all work in unison to create one picture.
11/15 Direct Link
I really like Alfred Noyes poem "The Highwayman." It is such a beautiful and intriguing tale of two lovers. I did some research and found out that it takes place during the Revolutionary war. Also I discovered that a highwayman is someone who sneaks around a public highway and robs other people. I enjoy when the hero in a piece is not perfect. It makes the story much more believable. I think the rhythm in this poem adds to the haunting feel. Noyes is such an amazing writer. The alliteration and repetition work perfectly along with his superb word choices.
11/16 Direct Link
I have heard that some people think Robert Frost's poem, "Stopping by The Woods on a Snowy Evening," is about death and possibly suicide. But I feel that it is about the struggle of the everyman to resign oneself to doing what has to be done. Everybody has had that kind of day, when they want to shirk their responsibilities. Making yourself stick to your plans and be responsible is part of what keeps the world alive and running. The only death the narrator momentarily longs for is the death of responsibilities, to break away from the monotony of life.
11/17 Direct Link
The poem, "A Poison Tree," William Blake discusses the importance of working out anger. It is more difficult to work out problems with someone when they are you enemy. It is necessary though, because if you do not your anger can grow. It turns into something very destructive, like a poison apple. I think Blake uses an apple to remind us of Adam and Eve and how they ate the forbidden fruit. I don't completely understand why Blake makes this connection though. Maybe his hatred tempts his enemy to hate and then the hate grows in the enemy poisoning him.
11/18 Direct Link
In the poem, "The Fly," William Blake ponders enjoyment, thought, death, and life. A question comes to mind when I read this poem. Dose a fly have thoughts? I guess they think about being hungry, but do they have thoughts that are more than the instinctual type? Maybe Blake is saying that life can be ended through dangerous moments when there is a lapse of thought. People die in car accidents all the time and usually someone has an air headed moment that leads to the crash. People enjoy letting go and having fun but sometimes this can be dangerous.
11/19 Direct Link
Jim Morrison wrote some very interesting poetry. One poem that I really enjoy is called "The opening of the trunk." I think it is about growing up. When I first moved out of my parent's house I felt like my life had just begun. I was free to make mistakes and search for myself. I was free to figure out who I wanted to be. I did not long for my mom and dad's approval anymore. It is such an exciting time of life. You feel so sure of yourself even though you do not know where you are going.
11/20 Direct Link
"Ghost Song," written by Jim Morrison, is one of the strangest poems I have ever read! Some of his ideas are very unusual. No one I know thinks that they have been inhabited by dead Native American's souls. Morrison's writings are intriguing because of his word choices and unusual topics. I think he was under the influence of several different substances most of the time. He thought that death was some kind of passage and not just the ending of this life. He claimed he had visions of his Native American ancestors even though he was not a Native American.
11/21 Direct Link
In Jewel's poetry book, A Night without Armor, the poem "Camouflage" is very strait forward and easy to understand. Even though the first and third stanza's lines are written to look similar, they do not follow any rhyme scheme or syllable pattern. In fact if this poem was written without line breaks it would just be two sentences. This poem does not sound poetic to me. It does not make me wonder about anything. You do not have to figure anything out to understand it. It is poetry at its worst. I think poetry should incite some kind of reaction.
11/22 Direct Link
In the poem, "It's Like A Dream 2," Jewel says, "the things you fear are undefeatable not by their nature but by your approach." I think that this is so true! What it means is that we can only accomplish what we believe we can, regardless if accomplishing it is actually possible. We set ourselves up to fail when we let ourselves be afraid. Fear is this immobilizer. It is like writers block. If you are afraid of getting writers block, most likely you will get it. Emotions can be so powerful that they can mask what is really true.
11/23 Direct Link
In Tori Amos' song, "Bliss," the first line says, "father I killed my monkey." This is talking about preservation through destruction. It is the idea that if you destroy something you are protecting it from being defiled by someone else. Sometimes things can only have a special meaning for you. No one else can understand their importance because they have not been inside of your mind or experienced the things you have. So if you get rid of it then it will never hold any other significance to anyone else. The memory or meaning has been saved through its destruction.
11/24 Direct Link
In the song, "Crucify," Tori Amos effectively uses figurative and descriptive language. Amos was taught that she had to live life a certain way. The problem now is that she can not fit into this mold of what is supposedly right. So she feels guilty and she has trouble escaping this guilt. The vision of the caged bird shows that she does not feel free to live her life the way that she wants to. It is also conveyed that she does not want to live this way any longer when she says she "is sick of being in chains."
11/25 Direct Link
J. K. Stephan has written a wonderful poem called "Drinking Song." It is about the amazing properties of wine and alcoholic beverages. It is a perfectly rhymed poem with a clever and humorous twist in the last stanza. Stephan is able to put people of all different social classes on the same plane by finding a connection between then all. This makes his piece universally appealing. I think the posing of questions helps support his idea and adds to the humor. I have not read very many poems that I actually found to be funny, but this one definitely is.
11/26 Direct Link
"Fire and Ice," is an interesting poem written by Robert Frost. He talks about two different ways the physical world might end, with fire or with ice. At the same time he is comparing desire with fire and hate with ice. Fire is compared to desire because they're both feverish and consuming. Ice is compared to hate because when someone is full of hatred they become hardened and cold. Also it takes a while for something to freeze and hate usually builds up little by little. Desire and hatred are two ways that the world could end up decaying morally.
11/27 Direct Link
"There Was a Man Who Lived a Life of Fire," was written by Stephen Crane. At first it was difficult for me to understand how a man who lives a life of fire could look back on his life and think he had not actually lived. But I think that this man lived a life filled with evil. Looking back on his life he feels regret and he sees that he ended up suffering because of the mistakes that he made. Instead of being able to have true joy in life he only felt temporary gratification from his evil deeds.
11/28 Direct Link
Stephen Crane writes poems that make you think and his poem "In the Desert," is no exception. The fact that he calls the beast in the desert a friend shows that he does not consider himself any better than the creature. I think that this poem is examining the self destructive side of our human nature. It shows how odd it looks when someone is doing something that is bad for them. The creature says that he wants to eat his own heart even though it is bitter. For some reason we want to do things that are self destructive.
11/29 Direct Link
In, "The Truth of a Woman," Sir Walter Scott talks about how he feels about women. Well this poem is a perfect example of why you should not judge a group of people by one person in the group! Obviously the woman he is talking about has done him wrong. Her word is worth nothing to him. He says that if you tried to write words on water they would be more firm than hers. Yet he lets himself trust her again even after she has lied and he ends up being hurt again. He is a glutton for punishment.
11/30 Direct Link
"All You Who Sleep Tonight," written by Vikram Seth, is a sad and comforting poem all at the same time. It is sad because it is talking about being away from the one that you love. Seth is able to make it a comforting poem too by stating that even if you are alone you are not the only one who is alone. Everyone in the entire world has had at least one moment when they have felt lonely. He also infers that you should not be sad that you are apart because at least you have someone to love.