Despite the fact that the narrators use different seasons to portray the theme, both “The Wanderer” and “Wake Me Up When September Ends” develop upon season’s symbolism which depicts the desolate mood and the narrators’ reluctance to change due to their inability to let go of their past and present despair. In “The Wanderer” the narrator “woefully toil[s] on wintry seas” (l. 3) by himself because of “grievous disasters, and death of kin” (l. 7). The author uses winter to symbolize a time of little opportunity and death for the narrator because winter already examples a bleak time period with little life, and since th...
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...e in his memories now. In both pieces, the flashbacks contrast the emotions of the present-day gloomy narrator to the happier emotions of the narrator before the change while the narrators’ lingering in the past causes their own seclusion and misery.
In conclusion, through the elements of symbolism, imagery, and flashback “The Wanderer” and “Wake Me Up When September Ends” produce the common theme that lingering in the past creates isolation and misery. Though written in a different time period, “The Wanderer” proves relevant to today’s time through its notable comparison with a song from thousands of years later. Themes withstand time and apply to many different types of people in different ways depending on a person’s understanding of the message implied. Through literary elements, writers depict a message that the audience interprets with their own wisdom.
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