The Challangers Quest
The world today can be a dangerous place, causing people to be precautions. To be a risk taker in today’s society involves courage and a willingness to be vulnerable. In the poem“Swimming alone,” author Patricia Keeney uses diction and imagery to convey that venturing into risky situations requires one to be brave and yet desperate.
The swim is presented to the reader as an enormous challenge that only the brave and desperate would face, such as a player in a challenging computer game. Diction such as ‘dangerous’ and ‘trouble’ used throughout the swim maintains the risk the swimmer must face. The line“whirled pearl smoke,” signifies confusion which heightens the unsureness of the situation. Vulnerability becomes evident as the swimmer suffers “cunning furtive spasms.” The challenge heightens and the swimmer is represented as an “angry isolate.” Like a computer game special affects are added in to increase the danger such as the lightning and the darkness.
Imagery such as “Deliberately fracturing glass moving down through pools” conveys the mental picture of the water being glass shattered with every stroke. Shattering glass suggesting danger and fear. “Barely missing the moon’s pale hiss,” portrays the image of a deadly snake, heightening the risk of the challenge. The depiction of “white nudes between each sizzling shaft,” brings to the reader the vulnerability the swimmer feels running from one danger to another. Also, the affect of a challenging computer game is again played. The swimmer is like a losing player challenging each feat and then faced with yet another.
Some goodness comes out of taking the risk of swimming alone. Ones“prohibition and expectations are ignored.” The challenger of this feat has let go of all egoism as a result of the vulnerability faced. Despite this the...
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