Unheroic
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Unheroic. Mollie and Kaitlyn. Vocabulario. -Liffey (noun) a river in the E Republic of Ireland, flowing NW and NE from county Wicklow into Dublin Bay. -orators (noun) a public speaker -ledgers (noun) an account book of final entry. It was an Irish summer . It was wet .

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Unheroic

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Unheroic

Unheroic

Mollie and Kaitlyn


Vocabulario

Vocabulario

-Liffey (noun) a river in the E Republic of Ireland, flowing NW and NE from county Wicklow into Dublin Bay.

-orators (noun) a public speaker

-ledgers (noun) an account book of final entry


Unheroic

It was an Irish summer. It was wet.

It was a job. I was seventeen.

I set the clock and caught the bus at eight

and leaned my head against the misty window.

The city passed by. I got off

above the Liffey on a street of statues:

iron orators and granite patriots.

Arms wide. Lips apart. Last words.


Unheroic

I worked in a hotel. I carried trays.

I carried keys. I saw the rooms

when they were used and airless and again

when they were aired and ready and I stood

above the road and stared down at

silent eloquence and wet umbrellas.


Unheroic

There was a man who lived in the hotel.

He was a manager. I rarely saw him.

There was a rumor that he had a wound

from war or illness- no one seemed sure-

which would not heal. And when he finished

his day of ledgers and telephones he went

up the back stairs to his room

to dress it. I never found out

where it was. Someone said in his thigh.

Someone else said deep in his side.


Unheroic

He was a quiet man. He spoke softly.

I saw him once or twice on the stairs

at the back of the building by the laundry.

Once I waited, curious to see him.


Unheroic

Mostly I went home. I got my coat

and walked bare-headed to the river

past the wet, bronze and unbroken skin

of those who learned their time and knew their country.


Unheroic

How do I know my country? Let me tell you

it has been hard to do. And when I do

go back to difficult knowledge, it is not

to that street or those men raised

high above the certainties they stood on-

Ireland hero history – but how


Unheroic

I went behind the linen room and up

the stone stairs and climbed to the top.

And stood for a moment there, concealed

by shadows. In a hiding place.

Waiting to see.

Wanting to look again.

Into the patient face of the unhealed.


Historical geographical references

Historical/Geographical References

  • Liffey…a river in the E Republic of Ireland, flowing NW and NE from county Wicklow into Dublin Bay.

  • Statues- situated just north of the river Liffey is O’Connell street which features monuments and statues to various Irish political leaders.


Inarguables

Inarguables

  • Context:

    • Ireland

  • Speaker:

    • Someone that Boland had created.

  • Situation:

    • The speaker reflecting on their image of a hero through their experience working as a teenager.

  • Subject:

    • The speaker

    • A hero

  • Structure:

    • 7 stanzas – no pattern

    • First person

    • Choppy short sentences- reflecting on the past

    • Longer more developed sentences- thoughts/ideas

  • Prose Meaning:

    • The speaker reflects on her work experience over a summer when she learned about history of Ireland and also created for herself for her image of a hero.


Arguables

Arguables

  • There are several words discussing time, referring to the history in which the speaker is pondering.

  • Stanza 3 and 7 can be related.

  • Stanza 5: As she walks home, she passes all of the statues of the men who have served in wars, defending their country. They know the country because, while serving it, they traveled it. Now that they’re statues, their wounds are healed. (bronze and unbroken skin)

  • Stanza 6: It’s been hard for the speaker to know the country because she hasn’t experienced it like the soldiers had and therefore can’t see it through their eyes.

  • Stanza 7: In order to know her country, she goes in to the room that belonged to the soldier/hotel manager.

    (Stanza’s 5-7 are the most pivotal and most puzzling.)


Literary features

Literary Features

  • Imagery

    • “silent eloquence and wet umbrellas”

    • “wet, bronze and unbroken skin of those who learned their time and knew their country”

    • “concealed by shadows”

  • Mood/tone

    • Bored  curious (reader feels more engaged)  content

    • Mysterious

  • Enjambment


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