April 20, 2005

Here We Are

Dorothy Parker’s “Here We Are” was a very enjoyable short story. First off, I feel it is important to mention that this story was written in 1931, and times were much different in regards to romantic relationships and marriage. It was common practice for couples to wait to be intimate until the night of their honeymoon. Through the couples’ dialogue, one can see the blatant nervousness and sexual tension building between the two, as they arrive to their destination, going through their plans for the night, purposely avoiding conversation about sex…

They argue for the majority of the ride, about whether or not he likes her hat, his feelings for Louise, and her feelings for Joe Brooks, but yet they keep promising to never fight within the marriage. They seem to have a lot of doubts, particularly the wife, which is understandable ~ presuming that she will lose her virginity to him within just a few hours.

There is a lot of jealousy and mistrust between the two, and if this had been written in present day, I’m sure this marriage would be one that ends in divorce. It seems very trivial that she questions the man she just married about looking at one of the bridesmaids…! But this could just be the sexual tension and fear building up.

However, when considering the time of publication, it is quite possible new marriages began this way… with a reassurance of “Here we are… finally married and at the long-awaited honeymoon night.” While this would naturally bring happiness, joy, and relief, it also comes with nervousness, doubt, and uncertainty. After all, sex is important within a relationship. Making the life-long commitment to whom you know so much about but yet are completely unaware of how they will be in “that department” could cause some serious anxiety on a newlywed.

Today I feel that a lot of people marry for the wrong reasons, but also more couples are living together before tying the knot and engaging in premarital sex. Times are always changing… but it is interesting to read “Here We Are,” the tension was undeniable. Is the lack of intimacy and openness about it a good or bad thing? It seems unheard of today, but the newlyweds seemed very nervous about what was to come. I saw a lot of beauty within it, but also unanswered questions… most likely that would be answered throughout years of marriage and unconditional love. After all, I believe true love conquers all… marriage can be a beautiful and life-long commitment that representing many things, such as: monogamy, respect, friendship, acceptance, and love for one another. On a side note, I feel that the promiscuity and numerous premarital sexual relations are a fault on our society. Of course human beings have certain desires, but one of the greatest gifts of marriage is saving yourself for your mate. I found “Here We Are” to express so much beauty, sacrifice, and simplicity. It enables the reader to put themselves into the young couple’s place… to the excitement that comes with the wedding ceremony and anticipation to not only the honeymoon but the rest of their lives together and the many endless possibilities. ;)

Jerz: Am Lit II (EL 267): Parker, “Here We Are”

Posted by KaylaTurano at April 20, 2005 8:04 PM | TrackBack