Analysis Of The Search For Light By James Wright

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James Wright was a poet that dealt with many hardships in his life, but he found a way to turn those negative moments into beautiful works of poetry. As a child, he lived in poverty with his family and later on suffered with depression and alcoholism. Growing up in Ohio, Wright learned how to work hard which is reflected in his poetic achievements. Wright turned his struggles into poems and for him to be able to achieve success through his pain is what makes his work American. Frank McShane wrote “The Search for Light” in Peter Stit and Frank Graziano’s James Wright: A Profile, and in the book McShane includes: “James Wright knew how restricted most American lives were” (131). For Wright to be able to live the “restricted” life McShane is discussing,…show more content…
In order for Wright to get away from the situation he was living in, which was a very industrial area, he created poetry about nature. Wright used imagery to describe these scenes of nature and then occasionally used personification to enhance the image in the reader’s mind. The James Wright’s poem “Lying in a Hammock…” depicts the calm scenery that surrounds him as he is lying in a hammock at his friend 's farm. He notices little details like “I see the bronze butterfly, / Asleep on the black trunk,” (1-2). The poet also sees “as the evening darkens and comes on. / A chicken hawk floats over, looking for a home.” (11-12). For Wright to be able to notice and describes these details show how relaxed he is. Wright found himself in a place where he had no thoughts on his mind and nothing to worry about other than to focus on the world around him. This poem allows readers to daydream along with Wright and to be momentarily taken away from the situation they are currently in. Authors, Jeffrey Gray, Mary Balkun, and…show more content…
For example, Wright 's “Lying in a Hammock” ends with the sudden realization of “I have wasted my life.” (13). This endstop in the poem is hugely out of place since the rest of the poem consisted of a positive tone. Wright added all the imagery in the beginning to emphasize the final line even more. Geoffrey H. Hartman plainly discusses the effect of why Wright added the endpoint at the end of the poem in “From Beyond the Middle Style” in Peter Stit and Frank Granziano’s James Wright: The Heart of the Light; he states “The last line is a challenge, not a moralism. It is meant to be one impression among others: we have images and we have thoughts; here is a thought.”(141). The last line was just a “thought” and allows readers access to Wright’s mind. Wright was just relaxing on a hammock and could not even last the whole day without a negative thought popping into his mind. A lot of people with a mental illness, like depression or anxiety, can relate to this idea, and Wright used the endpoint effectively to show how quick a person’s day can just turn around. The enjambment used in Wright 's “Fear Is What Quickens Me” shows the poet slowly deteriorating into this wild animal. In the second stanza Wright states, “ I can hear rabbits and mourning doves whispering together / In the dark grass, there / Under the trees.” (12-14). This particular enjambment carries on

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