Failure In Ha Songnan's Short Story 'Waxen Wings'

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Failure is inevitable. Ha Songnan makes this topic clearly in her unique and dispassionate short story “Waxen Wings”. In the story, Songnan’s main character “Birdie” dreams of flying, but is introduced to many hardships that momentarily shoots down her dreams. Songnan evaluates everyday normality and adds emphasis to represent how life will not always “be on your side.” Songnan’s use of sequence and order and second person point of view demonstrates Birdie’s metaphorical extraneous misfortunes. Songnan’s use of the term “you” creates sensuality and a connection with the reader. The author’s writing technique also places the reader into the story. Songnan writes, “soon enough you learn that your hang time… is longer than the other children.” This is the moment Birdie realizes what what she wants to do. This creates a connection with the reader and Birdie’s innermost feeling. At a young age, Birdie does not only figure out what she is good at, but is introduced to her first setback of the many to come. Songnan then switches to the teacher's point of view to explain the teacher's outrage. Birdie’s teacher tells her “it is impossible… to fly.” This sets Birdie up for failure in the future.…show more content…
To begin with, Songnan transitions throughout her story with a variety of flashbacks that corresponds with Birdie’s problematic situations she seems to continuously cause upon herself. The structure of “Waxen Wings” brings together Birdie’s hopes and desires in past tense. Moreover, Songnan orders her subjects according to Birdie’s maturity. She writes of Birdie at “ten years old”, to her middle and high schools years, to finally, age 26. The reader gets the idea Birdie has learned from her mistakes, nevertheless more incidents are depicted. In addition, if the structure was to ever be disfigured, there would not be as an impact on the reader. Birdie’s troubles are heightened as the story
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