Belonging Essay - “the Simple Gift” & “a Child Called It”

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The desire to belong to people or a place is important to individuals as it helps them develop a sense of security and identity. This statement can be seen throughout various texts but is undoubtedly shown through the texts ‘The Simple Gift’ and ‘A Child Called IT’.

The free verse novel ‘The Simple Gift’ is about Billy Luckett, a sixteen-year-old boy who decides to leave home, as he felt he was isolated from everyone else. Billy finds his security, peace and identity in the natural environment but is also shown throughout the novel that he does not give up to be a part of something or someone as he continues to strive to see the good side to others.

In the novel Herrick constantly uses a various array of techniques such as symbolism, flashback and first person to portray the character’s feelings. Billy “praying for morning and sunshine” gives a sign to the reader that he desires a new life, and the symbolism of the morning and sunshine signify a new day. The wind and the rain “hitting Billy in the face with the force of a father’s punch” also help to expose the mistreatment that his father had given him whilst being at home. Through these quotes it is patent that Herrick employs the techniques symbolism and flash back to show how he is not accepted by his father.

When Billy finally finds his place he can call home, Bendarat, here he also discovers his first real companionship from Old Bill, the “saddest man in the world”, and Caitlin, a girl he meets at McDonald’s who is from a wealthy family. To begin Billy is presented to the, at times, judgmental Caitlin as a bum but by displaying his compassion and not only being a homeless boy on the street he changes her perspective on himself, Old Bill and people like him. When we first see Caitlin, Herrick employs first person and the change in perspective to show Caitlin’s first reaction to Billy eating scraps at McDonalds - “put that back.” However, Caitlin avoids this, and instead says, “I hate mopping” to...
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