Reading for Understanding: Bones
In the story "Bones" by J. Lee Engfer, we meet a young, 27 year old, self diagnosed hypochondriac named Lea who acts as if she doesn't appreciate life. Lea in the beginning of the story is a pessimist but towards the end we see a change in her ideas and thinking until she becomes optimistic about her life. We also meet a young spirited older woman named Thea who is vivacious and fun loving with a sense of style which makes her almost 1940's Hollywood-esque, with the neck scarves and painted on eyebrows. The story is a small look into Lea's life. We learn key points about her such as her mother passing away, and her self-diagnosed hypochondria. It's Halloween and Lea and her friend Thea go for a walk to Lake Harriet near Thea's house. Lea has an epiphany about her life. The theme of the story is about living your life to the fullest. The idea that Lea is a hypochondriac could have an even deeper meaning, such as Lea representing the oppression of society in today which is seen almost everywhere with people who do not make an effort to make their lives worthwhile. Lea's turning point happens as her and Thea play in one of several piles of leaves. Perhaps the leaves have a more significant meaning than just leaves? Maybe the dead leaves represent Lea's dead personality and dull, meaningless life. I believe so. I believe the leaves being played in and stirred about represent a deeper meaning of change and finding meaning in life. A simple action of playing in leaves brought on an epiphany that Lea should start living her life. As they walk back home Lea has to slow down to Thea's pace, which makes her realize that despite Thea's age, she is able to fulfill her life with the satisfaction of knowing that if she died today, she would have died alive. This short story can relate to many things, as it is an issue seen in society very often. Religion can be an example of how it restricts your life from doing certain things,...
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