The Works of Henry Van Dyke

Powerful Essays
Short stories are often written in order to quickly sum up an experience or point out a relevant moral or lesson. Numerous authors prefer to express their own interests or opinions through their short stories. Henry Van Dyke guided his own writing by referring to his worldly and spiritual views aside from his interests and hobbies. Due to his appreciation of nature and the time period during which he lived, Henry Van Dyke relied heavily on themes of death and regret in an effort to convey detailed and subtle cautionary tales.
Van Dyke held an obvious passion for exploring nature and was extremely active. Juliet from Pennsylvania State University states, “…he energetically trampled through forest trails, fished at troutbrooks, scrambled wooded mountains, and took virtual ownership of nature” (Juliet 1). Since he spent much of his time outside, choosing the correct or appropriate setting for his stories was probably extremely easy for him. By referring to his experiences, he was able to identify and select different variables needed to create the right mood for the story. A certain time of day mixed with a certain type of surrounding may arouse specific feelings. His ability to choose these allowed him to quickly and efficiently set the mood at the beginning of the story. The mood itself is a necessary variable required to establish the moral, and Van Dyke was capable of selecting the perfect factors for the setting in order to create those feelings. In the story, he states those factors up front or infers them through careful detail, through both narrative and dialogue. Even though the setting is generally not the main focus of the plot, it is essential to it, next to the ending result and establishment of the theme. Each detai...

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..., ultimately displaying a moral or lesson that he learned himself from his own or others’ mistakes. Furthermore, he solely portrayed those lessons to be cautionary advice in an effort to offer his knowledge and transform the world to be a better home.

Works Cited
All Poetry. "Henry Van Dyke." All Poetry. All Poetry, n.d. Web. 15 Mar. 2014.
The Famous People. "Henry Van Dyke Biography." The Famous People. The Famous People,
n.d. Web. 15 Mar. 2014.
Juliet Iwelumor. "Henry Van Dyke." Henry Van Dyke. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Mar. 2014.
Van Dyke, Henry. “Antwerp Road.” The Valley of Vision. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons,
1920. 19. Web.
Van Dyke, Henry. “A Remembered Dream.” The Valley of Vision. New York: Charles
Scribner’s Sons, 1920. 4. Web.
Van Dyke, Henry. “Justice of the Elements.” The Valley of Vision. New York: Charles
Scribner’s Sons, 1920. 76-77. Web.
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