The Geranium

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In the first paragraph, Marney is described to us as a typical house wife who cleans intensely all day long. “She did the dishes, washed the tea-towels, wiped down the table, and took the ashpan out…” It is shown that this is a routine of non-stop cleaning for Marney everyday. Her life seems rather dull and boring except for when her friends, “Sandra and Joey and their kids might call in”. Yet still Marney couldn’t enjoy all the fun with the ladies, she wouldn’t even “come for a stretch” with them. From her hesitation and excuses “I’m busy… I might do a bit more… out the back…” we can feel that there’s something preventing Marney from socializing.

The reason begins to emerge towards the end when Bob, her husband comes home from work. Straight away he demands to know every detail of what she has been doing during the day. “So you been digging? What else? Who was here?” Bob’s interrogative questions threaten and intimidate Marney to make sure that he ‘better not find out different”. Again we can sense Marney’s terror through her hesitations “Sandra gave...She said to put it...in water...and might grow.” When Bob finds out about “The Geranium” he tells her to “chuck that thing out” and she throws it away without a question, even though earlier on we see that she really wanted it. This is a clear demonstration of his control and dominance over Marney.

Bob’s aggressive abuse is another thing that Marney fears. Despite being injured she shows no sign of fighting back and chooses to keep quiet. Not saying a single word to her friends. “Before they came she would put on her cardigan to hide her arm”. It’s maybe because she is afraid of the matter getting worse or that she doesn’t have enough courage to confront him. Her only solution then is to endure the domestic violence from Bob.

Due to the mental block built-up by the continuous abuse from Bob, Marney is not allowed to access to the outside world. Her only comfort and dream lie in the Wednesday’s...
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