An Analysis of Oranges by Gary Soto and The Night Grandma Died by Elizabeth Brewster

In “Oranges”, Gary Soto celebrates the love and affection a twelve years old boy had for his girl in the winter season. The first line of the poem makes it clear that the boy was just twelve years old when he was first able to walk down the street with a girl. The poem illustrates the nervousness he displayed as they walked down the street “cold and weighted down with two oranges in my jacket” depicts how the boy was nervous. As being nervous would get you to notice every little thing that happens around you and notice even the slightest things. As a typical twelve years old lad, he did not know what to expect on his first date with his girl.

The oranges are his burning love, desire, hence the “fire in my hands” or “the porch…yellow”. The orange in his jacket symbolized the loving and glowing relationship between the boy and the girl, as the orange could have gained a lot of attention “that was so bright against…that, from some distance/someone might have thought I was making a fire in my hands”. Although, it is winter and everything around them is cold and dull, the love between these adolescents is still able to glow in the dark. The “Orange” is a symbolism of great happiness and him being able to describe where the girl lives, it is vivid that they have known each other for a while.

When the boy and the girl walked down the street and entered a Drug store, she picked up a chocolate candy bar but the lad only had a token with him while the chocolate candy bar cost 10 cents. This situation shows that this period was a time when chocolate candy bars cost 10cents and a time when a shop owner will accept an orange from a young boy to make a full payment of what they have brought because the lad did not have the full payme...

... middle of paper ... the corpse and the grandma’s nephew switched from playing everyone’s “favorite tune” to playing an hymn that suits the situation.

There are two phases to their action though; in the Western culture, the behavior the family put regards the corpse at first is a non-challant attitude as they were supposed to be sober and down but instead, they ignored and forgets the fact that the grandma is dead which could be because they never liked her, as our narrator says in the last line “Grandmother, dead, whom I never liked”.

The second phase is the African culture; in Africa, when an elderly person dies in a family, it is seen as a source of celebration and where people merry and dine together. So judging from the African perspective, the attitude of the family at first was absolutely right and they could have dine and win all day.

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