Mary Olivers The Journey analysis

Length: 5 Pages 1256 Words

“The Journey” We All Encounter By Mary Oliver Life is An ongoing Journey that all people must undergo. Mary Oliver causes the reader to fully experience the lifelong struggle of finding her/himself. Ultimately the common goal in this poem, and in our lives, is to show one’s need to find his/herself through the countless obstacles in our way. The idea that this poem is ongoing and lacking stanza breaks can implicitly illustrate the notion that life itself is ongoing without “breaks”. The view that through good and bad (obstacles), we all must go on is represented in lines 10-12, “Mend my life!” each voice cried. But you didn’t stop. Oliver is explaining to the reader that although we will discover many hardships in life, we must move on and continue our personal journey as seen in line 12, “But you didn’t stop”. The lack of stanza breaks also causes the reader to move more quickly through the poem. He/she is “pulled” through the poetry because many of the sentences are short and contain only three to four words. Another cause of “pulling” through the work is that many sentences are cut off and continued on the next line. Oliver is doing this to ge Continue...


Another example of people being obstacles is in lines 14-16, though the wind pried with it's stiff fingers at the very foundations-. It is always the first word in a line and followed by a hardship one must endure to reach the final destination. The main repetition is with the words "determined, "do, and "save. By showing the visual "ups and downs of "the Journey, Oliver is demonstrating that she recognizes that the journey is strenuous and difficult. People, or obstacles, constantly come in the way of people trying to find and help themselves, but eventually a person realizes they can't save anyone in life other than himherself. Oliver mentions that the only person someone can save is himherself. A "self quest is exactly what Oliver has created in this work. Our lives go by faster than we expect. The hardships that come with life's journey are also illustrated with Oliver's word choices. When put together, these last four lines of the poem are the most substantial. The feeling previously mentioned of being "rushed through the poem can be compared to the quickness of life. An obvious example of this poem's "shape is in lines 17-19, though their melancholy was terrible. Throughout "The Journey, the word "though is used four times.