The title of Wyatt Prunty?s poem, ?Elderly Lady Crossing on Green?, describes the experience of a revengeful speaker. He tells how you should not to help that little old lady to cross the street. Then, he goes on to explain himself by saying that she used to be a nasty person who drove her car without any consideration for the pedestrians. In fact, she ?would have run you flat as paint / To make the light before it turned on her.? Finally, the speaker shows explains the woman?s horrible personality by saying that she has been lonely and unloved all of her life.
In keeping with the speaker?s revengeful tone, the diction Prunty uses is related to these ideas of the old woman?s cruelty, because such words connote the speaker?s strong opinion of how horrible and low the old lady is. Rhyme, imagery, and point of view produce this effect. In the second stanza, the speaker describes the old woman?s viciousness in detail: She drove a loaded V8 poweglide And would have run you flat as paint To make the light before it turned on her, Make it as she watched you faint The ?loaded V8 powerglide? that the lady drove is a symbol of her viciousness. The word ?powerglide? gives the reader the sensation of a racecar while the word ?loaded? reminds the reader of a gun. In fact, she uses her car to purposefully scare or hurt people. She makes people ?flat as paint? or ?blown out like trash?(line 12). These similes show that she has no consideration for others. Later, in the third stanza, the metaphor of how she made you ?jaywalk to eternity? supported this idea. She did these things watching the pedestrians (?as she watched you faint?, ?eyes locking you down?(line 9)), which reveals that she inflicted pain on others purposefully. The onomatopoeia in the last stanza ?she?s done a million times before? supports this by saying that this type of behavior wasn?t an accident for her; it was a daily event. The final metaphor in the last stanza (?she?s a small tug on the tidal swell?)...
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