Analysis Of William E. Stafford's 'Traveling Through The Dark'

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Pushed Away from Tragedy According to West Bend Culture of Safety, in the United States, there are approximately 1.5 million deer related car accidents annually. Also, there are around 175-200 fatalities every year and 10,000 injuries caused by car-deer collisions. Not only are deer causing many accidents, but they are left lying in the road. Then drivers have to avoid hitting the carcasses which could cause further accidents. The consequences of road kill left on roads relates to the problem the speaker has to face in the poem by William E. Stafford, “Traveling Through the Dark”. The speaker encounters a dead pregnant doe that has been hit and left on a narrow, mountain road. He has a dilemma between whether to save the fawn or roll the doe…show more content…
As he was dragging the doe to the side of the cliff, he noticed she was pregnant. He noticed, “She had stiffened already, almost cold.” The mother of the fawn is already dead, stiffened, and rigor mortis has settled from her body already being tough and lifeless. That means that it was a recent death, between 2-6 hours. Being dead, she can not have contractions and give the fawn a natural birth. Making matters worse, speaker may not know how to save the fawn by C-section. It would be difficult to perform a C-section because her body is already too tough to cut through. Sawing through the mother’s coat and hard body could unintentionally hurt the fawn. Even if the fawn were saved, the fawn would not have protection from predators and even careless drivers who might run it over . Furthermore, the fawn would have no food and it wouldn’t be able to walk from just being born. Because the fawn is not able to be born, it would slowly die as it loses consciousness from lack of nutrients and oxygen. By pushing her over the canyon, the fawn would die peacefully inside of its mother. The speaker recognizes that it is best to do this so that the fawn doesn’t go through any additional
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