Essay on After Twenty Years

Topics: Short story, Fiction, Old age Pages: 2 (596 words) Published: June 1, 2013
The thing that can't be changed by the time. -Essay on "After Twenty Years" by O. Henry


Twenty years is such a long time to change almost everything around us. During twenty years, a newborn baby becomes an adult and a middle-aged person becomes an elderly person. A short story "After Twenty Years" that is written by O. Henry deals with the time, as we can see in the title. Before I read this story, I had a question. Does everything really change after twenty years? After I finished to read it, I found the answer. Before let you know my answer, I will mention the short story. In this process, you can get a clue that is related to my answer. Firstly, I want to explain the features of this story. The story begins with "the policeman on the beat" at night. Starting with the action characterizes O. Henry's short story. Also, his detailed description of background, such as "the time was barely 10 o'clock at night, but chilly gusts of wind with a taste of rain in them had well nigh depeopled the streets" is shown throughout the story. There are lots of implications, too. For instance, a policeman who is a mysterious character at an early stage of the story says 'Big Joe' Brady's restaurant was torn down five years ago. The restaurant that becomes a hardware store is Bob's appointed place, so closedown of the restaurant implies something bad. Also, there is a homonym with an implication. In a Bob's dialogue, "It's worth it if my old partner turns up", the idiom "turn up" means two different things. One means 'appear' and the other means 'inform to the police'. This ambiguous homonym implicates something bad as well. Moreover, a temporal and spatial background imply the ending. This story happens at night, in front of the hardware store that was the restaurant five years ago. Secondly, I will mention a plot of the story. The features of this story is devices that makes the plot more interesting. Bob and Jimmy were friends who grew up together in New York. When...
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