Preview
Preview

Essay on Traveling Through the Dark by William Stafford

:: 1 Works Cited
Length: 1097 words (3.1 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Purple      
Open Document
Need writing help? Check your paper »



- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Traveling Through the Dark by William Stafford


In his poem, "Traveling Through the Dark," William Stafford presents the reader with the difficulty of one man's choice. Immediately, the scene is set, with the driver, who is "traveling though the dark" (line 1) coming upon a recently killed deer. At first, his decision with what to do with the deer is easy; he knows he must push it off the edge for the safety of other motorists, but then, a closer examination of the deer reveals to the man new circumstances. His decision is now perplexing, and his course of action is unclear. Through his use of metaphor, symbolism, and personification, Stafford alludes to the difficult decisions that occur along the road of life, and the consequences that are a result from those decisions. With the use of these stylistic devices, William Stafford illuminates death as a consequence of certain decisions.

To illustrate the theme of death, Stafford presents a metaphor relating the literal road to the road of life. In the first stanza, the road is described; it is narrow and is called the "Wilson river Road" (line 2). Also, the reader gets the sense that the road is very dark, and thus isolated. The only illuminated section of this road is the stretch that the man is currently travelling. Symbolically, this represents the present in the man?s life. The road that has already been traveled symbolizes the past. The man is unable to see it because of the darkness; yet, it is implanted in his memory through his experiences. Furthermore, the man literally cannot see farther ahead on this road, only as far as the headlights will allow. Likewise, the future in our lives is yet to be discovered. As one can see, Stafford?s metaphorical desc...


... middle of paper ...


...g into account all factors. This personification adds to the development of the poem, and illustrates how we are all influenced in our decisions.

Through his explanation and description throughout this poem, Stafford creates the image of the road of life and illustrates how the decisions we make are all interrelated and have consequences. "Travelling Through the Dark" reveals the difficulty in life, and the difficulty in properly dealing with problems that naturally occur as one progresses along the path of life. The biggest roadblock that can occur along this progression is death, which must be properly dealt with, as William Stafford proves by way of his uses of metaphor, symbolism, and personification.

Works Cited:

Stafford, William. ?Traveling Through the Dark.? Sound and Sense. Eighth edition. Ed. Laurence Perrine. Orlando: Harcourt Brace, 1992.



Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »







This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
Essay on Traveling Through the Dark by William Stafford - Traveling Through the Dark by William Stafford In his poem, "Traveling Through the Dark," William Stafford presents the reader with the difficulty of one man's choice. Immediately, the scene is set, with the driver, who is "traveling though the dark" (line 1) coming upon a recently killed deer. At first, his decision with what to do with the deer is easy; he knows he must push it off the edge for the safety of other motorists, but then, a closer examination of the deer reveals to the man new circumstances....   [tags: Papers William Stafford Through Dark Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1097 words
(3.1 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Traveling Through the Dark by William Stafford Essay examples - Poetry Essay Assignment “Traveling Through the Dark” ,by William Stafford, is a poem about a moral dilemma about the nature of death and the sadness that comes of it. The situation intensifies when a man, the driver of this truck, is driving late at night and sees this deer on the side of the road. Pulling over he seeing that’s this deer has recently been hit. Noticing that the doe is pregnant and that her body is getting very stiff but that her belly remains warm with the baby deer waiting to be born....   [tags: poem analysis, moral dillemma] 600 words
(1.7 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Essay about Saving Lives in "Traveling through the Dark" by William Stafford - Saving Lives The most wonderful thing in the world is being able to save the life of another. Some people have this chance and some people do not. The people that have not had the chance might have never been in a situation to save a person's or thing's life. Some people might have been in a situation to have saved someone or something and not chosen to act on it. The situation can be unnoticeable and you would have to think about it and observe the details. The poem "Traveling through the Dark" by William Stafford is about making the right decisions and saving lives....   [tags: Poetry] 528 words
(1.5 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Atrocities in Stafford's Traveling Through the Dark Essay - Atrocities in Stafford's Traveling Through the Dark Is a drive just a drive, or is it a metaphor that imparts appreciation for life's fragility while simultaneously lamenting man's inability to appropriately confront, or understand, death. William Stafford's "Traveling Through the Dark" illustrates the mechanisms by which seemingly mundane events become probes into the mystery and ambiguity of the human condition. The poem's situation is simple, a lone traveler driving along a desolate canyon road spots a felled deer; the traveler, desiring neither to hit the deer, nor by swerving to avoid it, hurtle his car over the canyon precipice, stops his vehicle and proceeds to push the falle...   [tags: Traveling Through Dark] 791 words
(2.3 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Importance of Control in Stafford's Traveling Through the Dark Essay - Importance of Control in Stafford's Traveling Through the Dark In William Stafford's "Traveling Through the Dark," the narrator encounters a dead deer on the edge of the road. He knows that the safe and proper course of action is to push the deer into the canyon, but when he finds that the doe was near giving birth before she died, he hesitates to kill the unborn fawn. Stafford's central idea in the poem revolves around the decision the narrator makes to sacrifice the deer in order to clear the road of obstacles, so that others who drive on the dark, narrow road won't have to swerve....   [tags: Traveling Through Dark] 725 words
(2.1 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Explication of Traveling in the Dark Essay - In life there are many circumstances where one is faced with a dilemma, a situation where a person can truly discover which direction their moral compass really points. In those moments, choices are made that can either lead one to the place they always knew they were headed or someone can find out their motives are not as pure as they originally thought. In William Stafford’s Traveling through the dark the narrator is faced with one of those circumstances dealing with morality where a decision must be made regarding a dead carcass....   [tags: William Stafford, Analysis] 1056 words
(3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Traveling through the Dark - "Traveling Through the Dark" by William Stafford was published in 1962. This poem has no consistent line length; there is also no specific rhyme scheme. One characteristic I found in this poem is the similarity between some of the words. Some of the words have the same sounds such as lines five and seven: "By glow of the tail-light I stumbled back of the car.../she had stiffened already, almost cold" (Stafford 155), the words "car" and "cold" both have the C sound. I have found the same similarity between sounds in other lines also....   [tags: Poetry] 487 words
(1.4 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Traveling Through the Dark Essay - Traveling Through the Dark Stafford furtively conceals the profound meaning of his poem behind a story of the narrator, who stops alongside the road to care for a deer. The genius behind poem is better understood when the superficial meaning is expressed deeply. Driving down a narrow mountain road, "traveling through the dark," the narrator of the poem encounters a deer. The deer is actually "dead on the edge of the Wilson River road." The traveler decides to send the deer over the edge of the canyon, because "to swerve might make more dead." This line indicates that if he fails or "swerves" in his decision, the deer could cause an accident on the narrow road that might cost more lives....   [tags: Papers] 542 words
(1.5 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
William Stafford Vs Walt Whitman Essay - Comparing Two Poets William Stafford's "Traveling Through the Dark" is beautifully written poem that expresses one of life's most challenging aspects. It is the story of a man's solitary struggle to deal with a tragic event that he encounters. Driving down a narrow mountain road, "Traveling Through the Dark," the narrator of the poem encounters a deer. This line might fool the reader into believing the poem has a happy theme; after all, a deer is a beautiful creature that most people associate with nature or freedom....   [tags: Traveling Dark Noiseless Spider Poem Comparison] 1338 words
(3.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
A Comparison Between ?Traveling through the dark? and ?A Noiseless, Pa Essay - A Comparison Between “Traveling through the dark” and “A Noiseless, Patient Spider” William Stafford’s "Traveling through the dark" is beautifully written poem that expresses one of life’s most challenging aspects. It is the story of a man’s solitary struggle to deal with a tragic event that he encounters. Driving down a narrow mountain road, “Traveling through the dark,” the narrator of the poem encounters a deer. This line might fool the reader into believing the poem has a happy theme however, the first word of the second line reverses this belief....   [tags: essays research papers] 1142 words
(3.3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]