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Wislawa Szymborska, “The Terrorist He Watches”

This poem speaks to me through the eyes of a terrorist and the person watching the terrorist. It tells how the terrorist has set the time of death for his victims. It tells how he waits and watches people move in and out of the “bar” (line one) never knowing what waits for them at “one twenty p.m.” (line one). The poem illustrates to the reader how the count down takes place in the terrorist’s mind. In the second stanza, it gives the reader the impression that the terrorist is being watched, after he drops the bomb off at the bar. Also the terrorist speaks of how some lives will be saved from the explosion. He also informs the reader that you will have to wait to see what the out coming of some of the victims will be. Finally, in this poem you see that the terrorist gets the satisfaction of the bomb going off and how death awaits the victims of the terrorist without them even knowing it. In all the stanzas excluding the first, second, and seven: the terrorist watches the movement of his victims in and near the bar. He takes note of what the victims are wearing when they enter the bar and if they leave behind anything in order to reenter the bar before the explosion takes place. “A woman in a yellow jacket, she goes in.” (line eight), without a doubt we know that this woman dies in the explosion because the terrorist never mentions this woman leaving the bar. Then there is the fat man, he was leaving before the explosion was scheduled to take place, but at “one nineteen and fifty seconds” (line twenty-five) of the count down he goes back into the bar for his “gloves” (line twenty-six). Again, this is a victim that we know is involved in the explosion that is set to take place at “one twenty p.m” (line one and twenty-seven). These two victims we know for sure were apart of the terrorist attack placed on the bar. In the second stanza, I get the impression that someone may be watching the terrorist ...

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Wislawa Szymborska, “The Terrorist He Watches”. (1969, December 31). In DirectEssays.com. Retrieved 23:58, September 14, 2014, from http://www.megaessays.com/viewpaper/26872.html