January 2009 Archives

Let's Start Fresh

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The Pasture, by Robert Frost, was a poem I interpreted to have a deep meaning. While reading, I found myself thinking of an individual who, after a long fall and winter season, was taking the opportunity to start fresh as the snow melted and the signs of spring began to emerge. By clearing away the leaves, it shows the desire to expose the past, clean it up, and move on in hopes of a brighter future. Once life becomes clearer, happiness can be found. In lines 4 and 8 of the poem, the repetition of the words "You come too" (Frost), shows that sometimes, in order to move past a difficult past, it is important to let other into your future.

Tired of the Desired

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"For I have had too much
Of apple-picking: I am overtired
Of the great harvest I myself desired."
-Robert Frost, After Apple Picking (Lines 27-29)


           This poem seems to begin with a new sense of life, excitement, and devotion. As it continues, I feel that the poem begins to take on a slightly more solemn feel. Its almost as if Frost is saying that you can not stay excited about something forever. As time passes, things begin to change, no matter what the situation is. Whether feelings are focused around apples, friends, or even a career goal, those feelings can be swayed as time passes. In lines 27-29, I feel as if the fascination for one thing has begun to fade. When an individual becomes completely immersed in something, it is natural to become overworked. Apple-picking was once something enjoyable. It then became a tedious task. As the poem ends, and the final sleep is approaching, I feel as if Frost is saying that it is important to pace yourself and always continue to expand your horizons. Focusing your life on one thing, and one thing only, can have dramatic negative consequences.


It's All About The Smile

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"He smiled understandingly- much more than understandingly. It was one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it that you may come across four or five times in life. It faced- or seemed to face- the whole external world for an instant, and then concentrated on you with an irresistible prejudice in your favor." - Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby p.52

            I chose this quote because it describes, and immediately follows Carraway's first impression, and face-to-face encounter with Gatsby. I think it caught my attention because I have never before seen a smile describe with such emotion. While reading, I could almost envision Nick pausing for a long moment in the conversation just to analyze this smile. Fitzgerald seems to be portraying Gatsby as someone who had the ability to make an individual feel as if they were the only person in a room. Gatsby seems to be cautious and selective in his actions, and while others gossip about the rumor that he killed a man, Nick seems to be oddly struck by him. This passage left me with the feeling that behind that almost unexplainable smile, is another side to Gatsby that we will soon uncover. It seems as if he has the ability to draw people under some sort of spell. The people at his parties seem to know almost nothing about him, yet he fascinates them in a mysterious way. I feel that we will soon discover what is truly hiding behind that smile.


Reading Literature Like a Professor

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"Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar." - Sigmund Freud (How to Read Literature Like a Professor- Foster p.7)

I chose this quote, from the chapter entitled "Nice to Eat with You: Acts of Communion" because I think that when it comes to reading literature, so much can be discovered if you chose to read between the lines. Sometimes things are not always cut and dry. How one individual interprets a section in a book can be completely different than another persons interpretation. Maybe an individual had just experienced a tragedy before reading a book, and because of that, they read in a specific mindframe. Then, a few months later, they read the book again, and reach a whole knew conclusion from the text. This is what makes literature so interesting. It is relatable, it is investigatable. Readers are able to draw their own conclusions, and they can not be told that those conclusions are incorrect.


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