Sara Teasdale’s poem, “There Will Come Soft Rains,” expresses the theme, “War is a trivial activity to engage in.” Throughout the poem, Teasdale compares nature and mankind at times of war, illustrating that while nature joyously continues with its duties, humans are destroying themselves in battle. For example, a quote from the fifth stanza of the verse illustrates the theme, “Not one would mind, neither bird nor tree / If mankind perished utterly;” asserting that humans made decisions that negatively impacted themselves and the world (Teasdale 9-10). In addition, the speaker also tries to bring the message across that nature progresses peacefully. These statements create a vast contrast between the two parties: nature and mankind, enhancing the strength of the theme. It displays the message the poet wants to bring forth to the reader; a message about human stupidity and the unnecessary act of war. Secondly, Teasdale states in the last lines of the poem, “And Spring herself, when she woke at dawn, / Would scarcely know that we were gone.” effectively personifying Spring while also showcasing the theme (11-12). In the first clause of line 11, with selective placement of words and capitalization, the poet’s voice shows Spring to be a large and highly important figure of light and prosperity. With that being said, the speaker, in the line 12, announces that Spring would forget about the race of man in a day’s time. Again, a few lesson is trying to be taught to the reader in this section. To illustrate that war is not righteous, the personification of Spring is said to have failed to remember that the human race existed. The prosperous being is being used to show that man is not worth remembering. Furthermore, by stating that man is not remembered, it is revealed that nature moves on, just like mankind should have been doing in war. This poem describes the moral and ethical values that readers should pick up about war from Mother Nature.
The short story, “The Stolen Party,” greatly illustrates the literary device of anagnorisis and its foreshadowing when a character realizes why she was in a certain situation. Anagnorisis, generally, is when a character makes an essential discovery, but in this situation, it refers to a character realizing the essence of the situation they are currently in, as seen with Rosaura, the main character of this short story. Rosaura is the daughter of a maidservant who attends her friend’s birthday party, thinking that she is a greatly valued companion of the rich girl named Luciana. Rosaura and Luciana are well acquainted, since Luciana’s house happens to be where Rosaura’s mother works, and the two often do homework together afterschool (Heker par. 18-34). Throughout the birthday celebration and festivities, Rosaura sees herself in a high position; she is the only one who sees the party magician’s monkey, serves hot dogs and cake, and helps the magician with tricks (Heker par. 1, 33, 36, 48). The point of anagnorisis occurs at the time of the offering of return gifts. When Luciana’s mother gives each child a toy depending on their gender, Rosaura is handed money, which signifies that the whole purpose of having her at the party was as a maid (Heker par. 63). Throughout “The Stolen Party,” author Liliana Heker leaves several clues for the reader that foreshadow the reason Rosaura is invited to the party, one of which is the fact that many want her help during the party, including Luciana’s mother, kids, and the magician. Deeply honored at first, Rosaura discovers that she is just a mere “pawn” to all, and was necessary only as an assistant for tasks. One example of the exploitation of Rosaura’s strengths is found when Señora Ines, the parent of Luciana, asks, “[She] asked Rosaura if she wouldn’t mind helping serve out the hot dogs, as she knew the house so much better than the others,” treating her, exactly like her mother, as a maidservant (Heker par. 33). Secondly, the symbol of the monkey, the magician’s “partner,” is used to foreshadow the course of events and Rosaura’s fate. Heker uses the symbolized animal in an analogy: the monkey, who is at the command of his owner, the magician, is similar to a maidservant, assumed as Rosaura, who is controlled by the rich. When Rosaura sees the trapped monkey, she likes it, which is situational irony, since when glancing at the monkey, one could figuratively say that she is glancing at a mirror.
As I sit at my desk,
My mind runs free,
But all grotesque
Are the ideas I see.
Where are the good ones
That lead to a story?
I’ve got tons
In a bad category.
Why, it is the villain,
Who has left a trillion
Writers in shock,
Now arriving at me
Is Writer’s Block.
Credits: Apple logo, Bugdroid, desserts, basket of apples, and check/cross marks are not created by Amanvir.
“Oh, forget about the price, Johnny!” Father said to a ruminating me, “All that matters is that we have got an exotic new vacation home!” He was trying to cheer me up, but I knew that he too was contemplating the situation.
The island had first wowed Mother, when she saw it on a YouTube ad. Later that night, she called Father and I to show us this deal. All Mother had to do to get us on board was to show us a photo of the island, with its golden beaches, green forests, and the pristine waters surrounding it.
“This is the best idea anyone’s had until sliced bread,” Father had said, “How much does it cost?”
“I don’t know yet.” replied Mother, “I didn’t know if you guys were going to be interested or not, so I didn’t check yet.” She had navigated to the “Information” tab on the seller’s website, where we had discovered that the price of our own summer vacation isle would be a mere five dollars. Five dollars, being a very little amount, was spent without a doubt, though we all had the slightest suspicion that it was a scam.
The ferry boat continued forward, with all its passengers deep in thought. I didn’t understand why it would be five dollars. The briny smell of the Pacific had crept up my nose from the start of the ride, but it was worsening, so I had to plug my nose.
Finally, the captain announced that the island was a few hundred feet ahead. I tried to look out the window, but the dense fog didn’t allow me to see our vacation home. The boat came to a stop in a short while, and the captain announced that we had arrived. I looked out the boat, but saw nothing. Surely this was a mistake; the captain must have taken the wrong route.
Then, I saw it. It was as wide and as tall as me, but an island nonetheless. It had all the features of the one in the photo.
“How is this possible?” questioned Father, “the photos were so lifelike.”
“Yes, and the website and this “Welcome to Your New Island Home” brochure both have the specifications of the size of the island. They both said that it was a mile by a mile,” Mother declared. She opened up the small booklet to prove her point. Under the section bolded and underlined, “Island Specifications,” we found the size to be “1.1m x 0.9m”. Without the i’s after those m’s, the metric system has won the island agency five dollars fair and square.
There’s twenty-six letters from A to Z,
Likewise twenty-six from Z to A,
My house to yours is in miles thirty-three,
Yours to mine is the same.
But then why, might I ask that
This straightforward rule isn’t always hard-and-fast?
It simply falls flat
When it comes to a certain idea that I will now broadcast.
The week starts on Monday,
With five days of school for you,
And then comes the awaited holiday,
That somehow only lasts two!
Such injustice this is!
Two isn’t the same five
Why not give all the kids
With equal time to revive!
In the forests of Santa Cruz, California, a seed wafted over to an area with several grown trees. Though it knew that it was capable of developing into a huge tree, the seed’s neighboring plants ensured him that he would not even begin to sprout.
“Look at you! You’re so small!” exclaimed the nearby oak tree, “The other trees and I take up all the essentials in the area: water, sunlight, and nutrients. You won’t even have a chance to start growing.” Heavily discouraged by their words, the little seed lost all the confidence and hope it had it the beginning. As time went by, the oak tree, along with others that had joined later on, picked on it everyday.
Falling into a sad and almost lifeless state, it was forced to retreat into the soil. Unable to handle everyone’s taunts anymore, millimeter by millimeter, it crawled back into the mud.
“Maybe I am what they say I am; I can never grow to be even close to these giants. I give up…” were the seed’s last words before it went into a completely dormant state. After the passing of several days, the seed, or shall I say, the former seed, awakened to a bright light. He was out of the soil!
“How could this be?” he asked himself. Scanning down from head to toe, he saw that he was indeed a sapling.
“I did it,” he exclaimed, “I have transformed from a seed to a plant, just like everyone else. I have done it, regardless of what they said, which means that they don’t know what I’m capable of. I can grow to be whatever I want to be.” With this in mind, the sapling set out to grow tall, healthy, and strong.
Now, the oak did not even get through to him. His taunts continued but the sapling was on a mission of his own, too busy to even hear the oak tree’s words. With this determination, he grow at a rate faster than what was thought to be possible. Inching his way up the canopy, he continued to grow taller and taller. At one point, the oak tree stopped his insults. The now redwood tree, as the sapling was found to be, was closing the gap between the fifteen foot oak.
As years passed, the redwood grew to be one of the tallest in the plot of land that he occupied. More than 100 feet taller than the oak that once teased him, the height that he’d reached with a determined mind was commendable. He now realized that a seed can only grow when someone shoves it deep and hard into the ground.
Moral: Always take others’ disapproval and fault-finding, and use it to your advantage.