Marriage and Line Breaks

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1. Why is it impossible to dismiss the character in this poem as merely “a crazy old man” (line 1)? Based on the following information, “back from the hospital” shows he has illness. What he has put in his suitcase is weird, like “a piggy bank”. It is not a thing that a normal person will keep in the suitcase. In addition, the man considers himself as the younger man who loves music and cannot recognize who is the old, white-haired woman. All the things above indicate that the old man is not only “a crazy old man”; he gets illness in his mind.

2. Discuss the effect of the line breaks in lines 1-6 of the poem’s first complete sentence. How do the line breaks contribute to the meaning of these lines? This line breaks transform the description from the suitcase to the surrounding where the old man is in. It is a quick transition without any worthless word. In this way, make the pome feel like the mind of the old man-“rattling”.

3. What do the images in lines 6-20 indicate about the nature of the man’s memory? The surroundings shows the old man’s house is in the rural territory, since the roses and bushes have been mentioned. And also indicate that the old man does have some memory about the place he lives and only the things that he chooses to remember. The way of description feels like the old man please with what he has remembered and his confidence that he can go home.

4. Why is the final image of the “white-haired woman” especially effective? How does the final line serve as the poem’s emotional climax? “White-haired woman” kinds of a call back to the first line “a crazy old man”. It is not hard to tell they are married. And also shows that they have live together long enough to white her hair. She is glad to welcome his husband back from the hospital but his husband is wondering who is that women. Because of the old man’s illness, he cannot recognize his wife. Though it feels hurt, a man who she lives with for a lifetime has to “decide” who...
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