A Literary Analysis Of 'The Fish' By Elizabeth Bishop

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“The Fish” Literary Analysis “The Fish” by Elizabeth Bishop illustrates the art of capturing a fish from water, an act once used merely as a food source. When the narrator first caught the fish, she felt sickened by it. As the poem proceeds, the narrator starts to develop an admiration towards the fish. This poem is saturated with colorful imagery and sufficient descriptions, which helps the reader envision the narrator’s view of the fish transform. At first glimpse, the reader would believe that this poem is just about a regular fishing trip, but the central theme has a much greater meaning. Through imagery, similes, and paradox Bishop demonstrates that beauty and bliss can be uncovered in the most ambiguous things. Imagery serves as an extremely effective part of supporting the theme, which is why Bishop uses a lot of color references to give us mental images of the fish. The first time we see the fish being described with color is when the narrator uses “brown” (10-11) to describe it, which a very plain color. At this time, the narrator is still repulsed by the fish so she’s uses bland colors to describe it. A few lines later the narrator uses the color white to refer to sea lice and the fish's meat. As we continue reading we see the narrator use "reds and blacks" (29-31) and “pink” (32-33) to describe the fish’s blood and guts, which is…show more content…
At first, the narrator viewed the fish as unpleasant, even frightening. As the catcher of the fish observes its large eyes, grim face, and scars on the lip, she empathizes for the fish. During this stage of compassion is when the narrator realizes that the fish is truly beautiful. Other people fishing may have viewed the fish as a piece of waste because they couldn’t understand the complexity of the connection between the fish and the narrator. The fish’s untold expedition sparks an emotional connection for the narrator. Beauty can be found in the most ambiguous
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