Works Cited Missing
The subject of both poems is the untimely death of young people in
tragic accidents rather than sickness. Strangely both boys are killed
by machinery, the boy in "Out, Out-' by a mechanical saw and the boy
in "Mid-Term Break" by a car. Both poems describe the reactions of the
families to the deaths each of the families reacting quite
differently. Both poems talk about the deaths of young boys who have
older or younger siblings; one has at least one sister, while the
other has an elder brother and a younger sibling.
"Mid-Term Break" is written in the first person and is a far more
personal poem consequently the emotions expressed in it are much
easier observe and appreciate than in "Out, Out-' which is written in
the third person, distancing the reader and giving a much colder
perspective of the events.
"Mid-Term Break" is set in Northern Irelandwhile "Out, Out-' is set
"far into Vermont".
"Mid-Term Break" tells the tale of an older brother summoned home from
college because of the death of his young brother who has been run
over by a car. The main part of the poem is set in the family home,
prepared for the brother's funeral. The family is traumatized by the
event the parents suffering mostly the "father crying' - the mother
"coughed out angry tearless sighs". "Out, Out-' presents a different
death scene - far more sudden and unanticipated during the poem. A boy
working in a family's saw house is out helping by sawing down trees.
His sister calls him for food, shouting "supper" and as a result, he
slips and the saw cuts his hand. Surprisi...
... middle of paper ...
...ferent religions with the Protestants either keeping their grief to
themselves or merely accepting God's hand in the tragedy while the
Catholics find solace in an open display of grief and the comfort of
ritual such as the flowers and candles and lying in state of the
corpse in an open coffin for people to pay their last respects.
Alternatively it may hint at a completely different lifestyle; while
the family in 'Mid Term Break' seem to be quite well off, the family
in 'Out, Out-' may have to concentrate on survival and therefore have
to carry on eking out a living and do not have the time nor the energy
to mourn. I cannot truthfully say that I enjoyed either of the two
poems, but they both dealt with the subject of the sudden death of a
child in ways that remain with you long after you have finished
reading the poems.
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