Friday, February 22, 2019
Carrying a Heavy Load
Carrying a Heavy Load The word curb sum to hold, contain, or support something and to take that something you argon holding or backing to an other place. In m whatever cases when people talk most carrying things they permit out about physically carrying an object with some amount of freightiness from wholeness place to a nonher. Many times however people carry things with them throughout liveliness that rush no physical weight, weighing themselves down with the with child(p) burdens that breeding brings.Both Wideman and Obriens brusk stories exemplify a common asc closedownent of persevering through struggles and relieving oneself of the weight of supports struggles. The sol break downrs in OBriens short story The Things They Carried carry strained physical force full necessary for them to survive out in state of war, exclusively they besides carry heavy stirred up lade which pull up stakes be with them for the easiness of their lives if they be un adequ ate to(p) to let them go. Some things the men carry atomic number 18 universal, equivalent a compress in case of fatal injuries and a deuce-pound poncho that move be used as a raincoat, groundsheet, or tent.Most of the men are common, low-ranking soldiers and carry a standard M-16 assault rifle and several magazines of ammunition. several(prenominal) men carry grenade launchers. All men carry the figurative weight of memory and the literal weight of one another. They carry Vietnam itself, in the heavy weather and the dusty soil. The things they carry are also determined by their rank or specialty. Each mans physical burden consisted of weapons, cigarettes, C rations, and packets of Kool-Aid, and the more intangible things, much(prenominal) as fear and silent awe, that weigh these soldiers down.As leader, for example, deputy Jimmy Cross carries the maps, the compasses, and the responsibility for his mens lives. The medic, Rat Kiley, carries morphine, malaria tablets, and suppli es for thoughtful wounds, and the responsibility to save lives. The things they carry depend on several factors, including the mens priorities and their constitutions. Because the machine gunner Henry Dobbins is exceptionally large, for example, he carries bare rations because he is superstitious, he carries his girlfriends pantyhose around his neck.Nervous Ted Lavender carries cannabis and tranquilizers to calm himself down, and the religious Kiowa carries an illustrated New Testament, a gift from his father. With the amount of spot that the author gives to enumerating the weight of these objects, one might assume that these objects are what are really important to these soldiers, but in reality it is the incalculable weight of their burdens that truly weigh them down. The things of the title that OBriens characters carry are both literal and figurative.While they all carry heavy physical loads, they also all carry heavy randy loads, composed of grief, terror, delight in, and longing. Each mans physical burden underscores his emotional burden. Henry Dobbins, for example, carries his girlfriends pantyhose and, with them, the longing for love and comfort. Similarly, Lieutenant Jimmy Cross, of the Alpha Company, carries various reminders of his love for Martha, a girl from his college in New Jersey. Cross carries her letter in his wad and her ripe(p)-luck pebble in his mouth.He carries her photographs, including one of her playing volleyball game, but closer to his boob still are his memories. Lavender, one of the soldiers in the story, gets shot on his course back from going to the bathroom. That night the soldiers sit in the darkness discussing the short span between life and death in an attempt to check sense of the smudge. The morning after Lavenders death, in the lull rain, Cross crouches in his foxhole and burns Marthas garner and two photographs.By burning the physical reminders of Martha Cross believes that he will be able to go out about his past with her, and stop fantasizing about their future. OBrien wrote Besides, the letters were in his head. And even now, without photographs, Lieutenant Cross could catch up with Martha playing volleyball in her white gym shorts and yellow T-shirt. He could go over her moving in the rain. Even without the pictures and the letters he was still carrying Martha. These emotional burdens are the heaviest because they are intangibles and therefore cannot be disposed of.Physical burdens are no more than that if necessary they can be discarded. Emotional burdens, on the other hand, must be endured. OBrien, speaking of cowardice in particular, says, in many respects this was the heaviest burden of all, for it could never be put down. The soldiers see there is no easy way to rid themselves of their fears because of their abstract nature, but they dream escapist dreams of flying away in a unconditional and falling higher and higher, free of weight.Jimmy Cross tries to rid himself of intangible burdens by disposing of tangible ones that, to him, represent intangible qualities. He does this by burning his letters from Martha. He knows, though, that this simple act cannot rid him of his memories. He realized it was save a gesture Besides, the letters were in his head. His love for Martha is also represented by the small pebble, which she gave him, but the easily disposable pebble, which weighs merely an ounce, represents a much heavier emotional burden that he cannot rid himself of.Though in Widemans short story Newborn Thrown in Trash and Dies a tiny baby is cast down a rubbish microscope slide with no tools to survive, no physical load except for her own weight, she carries a heavy emotional load and reflects on what her life might piddle been had she lived on each floor of the tenement building where her 19-year-old mother lives. In the first paragraph of the story Wideman quickly expresses the theme of carrying burdens. Wideman writes, Your life rolling into a ball so dense, so super heavy it would run the universe down to hell if this tiny tiny lump of whatever didnt dissipate as quickly as its formed.Quicker. The weight of it is what you recant some infinitesimal fraction of when you stumble and crawl through your defeat days on earth. Here the newborn speaks about burdens and mishaps that come about in life. She explains to the reader that she will not be able to pull in much of a life but that people would have nothing to live for if they did not forget about the struggles and problems that were crashed onwards their eyes before they were born into this world. The rest of the short story tells a complete play-by-play of the flash of life she had before she was brought into the world.Each floor represents another stage or saddle in her short life. The floors of this story disguise the days of life, and the newborn that will have no chance to experience them explains the days of life abruptly in these words I believe a ll floors are not equally interesting. Less reason to notice some past others. compare would become long-winded, predictable. Though we may slight some and rattle on about others, that does not change the fact that each floor exists and the life on it is real, whether we pause to notice or not. People cannot have a good day everyday or everyday would become boring and predictable. In many instances of life people are put into situations such as the war that the soldiers in The Things They Carried, that they have no control over, and that they could not even begin to explain to people for the mere fact that the situation that they are in no one should ever have to deal about let alone experience. On the other end of the spectrum good days and good experiences are most much remembered and reminisced about for the rest of peoples lives, which they should be.The thing that people dont realize is that very often people carry around the burdens of their pasts and the bad days that th ey have had which make the rest of their lives less enjoyable. After the war, the psychological burdens the men carried during the war will continue to define them. Those who survive will carry guilt, grief, and confusion, although the heavy backpack filled with tools to survive will be gone. In both stories the characters carried emotional burdens, the soldiers carried fear and hope as well as the newborn baby.The soldiers hoped to see another day, and were scared that the opportunity might not come. They had lived lives before the war and feared that they might never get the opportunity to live happily with their love ones again so they carried belongings of their loved ones physically trying to pass their loved ones close and not forgotten. The same holds true with the newborn girl. She never gets the opportunity to experience her family, or to even establish a inter-group communication with anyone before she dies. Still she fantasizes about what it might have been like, what m ight have happen.The emotional burdens of fear of death attend to be unbearable for the soldiers in the first place because they know that they are losing the opportunity of life. The newborn however doesnt seem bitter about dying, she feels sympathy for the mother who put her in the shabu and accepts her life as being how it is, as she doesnt know any better. All in all the characters of both the stories carry their emotional loads till death, or until they go back home which even then the psychological affects of the war will still haunt them until they learn to let them go.So as the newborn surrenders to her death she lets go of her emotional burdens floor by floor never looking back, so to should the soldiers realize that their days are numbered and tomorrow is never promised so just as Wideman wrote at the end of his second paragraphs about how people try to forget the flash of their life that occurs before they are born people should also try to forget the bad days and the burdens of life as they happen and, live your life as if it hasnt happened before, as if the tape has not been punched full of holes, the die cast.