A story

Satisfactory Essays
Li-Young Lee’s poem “A Story” depicts the complex relationship between a father and his son. Lee portrays the complexity of their relationship by using point of view to understand how the father feels in this situation. The structure of this poem helps paint the fears the father has by shifting to the future. Also the use of diction adds emotion to the love that is being shared by the father and his son. Through the point of view, the structure, and the diction used in the poem, Lee is able to convey the complex relationship of the two characters. The poem is told from a third person point of view that is omniscient and allows for the characters thoughts, and fears to be heard. The son appears as a five year old with “…a boy’s supplication…” (22) For a story. From his aspect his father is known as “Baba” a source of entertainment and a storyteller. Yet, the fathers desire to please his son becomes lost during his immediate inability to “…Come up with one…”(2) story. The image of “the man rubbing his chin, scratching his ear” implies the emotions of unfulfilled hopes and opportunities. They are feelings the poet exerts to emphasize the contrast between the sons request and fathers response, a response that holds implications for their developing relationship. This poem has a symbolic structure, starting with a present situation, going to the future, and ending, again, with the present to show the trouble that is going through the fathers mind. While in the present tense the father cannot recall a new story “…and soon, he thinks, the boy will give up…” on him. The father establishes a troubling image of “…the boy packing his shirts…looking for his keys”. The man fears of his son growing up and leaving his side. As the boy sits in his lap, the father is terrorized as thoughts of his biggest fear run through his head. Lee’s ability to share the father’s thoughts and create images from the future portrays the trouble the father is having of his son giving up on

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