What point is the narrator trying to make about the change between his past (with Willie-Boy) and his current life (with Jen and Glyn)?.
How does Ihimaera show that the narrator is terribly conflicted about the events of the day ?
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What point is the narrator trying to make about the change between his past (with Willie-Boy) and his current life (with Jen and Glyn)?
He uses the poem Ozymandias as a metaphor for the wasteland of his past life, although as the story progresses it becomes clear that it is his current life that is more of a wasteland. His recall of the day with Willie-Boy is that of a perfect day, where he felt secure and that he belonged. In his current life, although he is successful, he is not happy – he doesn’t feel secure, happy or that he belongs.
His past life with Willie-Boy seems like a completely separate life. We are not sure how accurate his memory of the encounter with Willie-Boy was, as each time he replays the memory in his head (as a film), something more is added to it. Is the narrator adding the details or did they actually happen? However, it is clear that his memory of his past life with Willie Boy has had a profound effect on how he is feeling about his current one.
How does Ihimaera show that the narrator is terribly conflicted about the events of the day?
The way he reflects on his day over and over again and how it affected him.
He explains how his life has changed after seeing W-B at the prison. “I have been unable to sleep and have left my Jen to her dreams. I have been running and re-running this day through my mind like a film.
The way time stopped at the moment of recognition shows that it was big moment of conflict.
He was obviously conflicted because he couldn’t sleep. (See previous quote).
He also uses the poem to replace how he is feeling about his encounter. He had to learn the poem as a result of his “wagging” that day with W-B and it is now indelibly connected with his recent encounter.
What are the connections between the poem and the story?
At the end of the story, the narrator relates his friend to the statue of Ozymandias – BUT then HE becomes the statue – the wrecked remnant “When I look back at him I see only myself; my eyes, not his, staring back from behind the clouds of drifting sand”.
The last line of the story: “Nothing beside remains”. This is also in the last line of the poem. It is referring to the fact that Willie-Boy has taken over his thoughts and nothing remains.
“The sentinel crumbles” – this is referring to his friendship with W-B and how the seemingly permanent friendship is now just a memory. “It was as if I was the stranger…”(p.181) – the narrator becomes the narrator of the poem as well.
“The colossal wreck” is Willie Boy although it can also refer to how the narrator sees himself now.
The poem itself being learned and memorised – at the time the boys hated it but now it permeates more and more into the story. From this we can see that the memory of the best day of his life has changed his perception of the poem. The poem is irretrievably linked with his memories of W-B.