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Jamie by Elizabeth Brewster
Transcript of Jamie by Elizabeth Brewster
Suddenly he was deaf. There were no songs.
No voices any more.
He walked about stunned by the terrible silence.
Kicking a stick, rapping his knuckles on doors,
He felt a spell of silence all about him,
So loud it made a whirring in his ears.
People moved mouths without a sound escaping:
He shuddered at the strain of their throats.
And suddenly he watched them with suspicion.
Wondering if they were talking of his faults,
Were pitying him or seeing him with scorn.
He dived into their eyes and dragged up sneers,
And sauntering the streets, imagined laughter behind him.
Working at odd jobs, ploughing, picking potatoes
He became accustomed to an aimless and lonely labour.
He was solitary and unloquacious as a stone.
And silence grew over him like moss on an old stump.
But sometimes, going to town,
He was sore with the hunger for company among the people
And, getting drunk, would shout at them for friendship,
Laughing aloud in the streets.
He returned to the woods,
And dreaming at night of a shining cowboy heaven
Where guns crashed through his deafness, awoke morose,
And chopped the necks of pines trees in his anger. In her poem, "Jamie", Elizabeth Brewster describes the isolation of someone who feels different from the rest of society. Through the use of metaphors, imagery, and matter-of-fact tone, Brewster is able to convey the bitterness of the character's solitude. Rhyme scheme Free verse Tone
Bitter Theme The overall theme conveyed in the poem is the idea of isolation and feeling alone Imagery The character is smothered in silence throughout the poem. He feels alone in his own world or empty space and the author is able to reveal the character's conditions through imagery. Similes "And silence grew over him like moss on an old stump." Metaphors "He dived into their eyes and dragged up sneers," "He was solitary and unlaquacious as a stone." Personification "And chopped the necks of pine trees in his anger." Introduction Connatative Jamie's deafness could be a metaphor for his lack of lust for life Denotative People moved their mouths without a sound escaping;
he shudderedat the straining of their throats The deafness described in the poem could possibly mean Jamie is literally deaf. Sadness is a result of this disability. Through out the poem the speaker uses bitter tone and imagery to convey Jamie's loneliness. "He was as solitary and unloquacious as a stone." Jamie wallows in his loneliness and becomes passive in the world. He falls into a world of silence and "became accustomed to an aimless and lonely labor". The character Jamie reflects in the world, are those who no longer have an interest in life, and can't find a passion. Explication "When Jamie was sixteen,
suddenly he was deaf. There were no songs, no voices anymore." This part of the poem illustrates the differences between the normal life of a teenager and the silent world that Jamie lives in. Jamie has been shut out from the regular interactions of a teenager. When you’re sixteen you have a natural high on life. You have your friends and social life. Becoming suddenly deaf would put "a spell of silence about him" He became isolated because he could no longer relate to his friends or interact with them. Allusions "And dreaming at night of a shining cowboy heaven
Where guns crashed through his deafness..."