Identity In Dorothy Livesay's Unwritten Letter

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An identity is a valuable possession. It is consistently enhancing as it represents the individual’s determination to achieve their goals. An identity is personal and true to that who embraces it. The apostrophe “Unwritten Letter”, compiled by Dorothy Livesay, explores the power of potential agonizing consequences suffered from the corruption of identity. The poem is structured through the use of a silent listener who is surrounded by a defaced garden and can be metaphorically contrasted to the magnitude of society’s voice on one’s identity. The melancholic environment contributes to a dramatic atmosphere. Therefore, the standard actions society initiated on a daily basis can ultimately have a greater influence than expected. This could potentially shift to…show more content…
For example, society’s ignorance is displayed when the neighbors express how they would like to “see” (19) the silent listener “again” (19). They realize how the mute auditor’s liveliness has dissolved; however, they do not comprehend how they were the cause of this fatality. Additionally, the speaker mentions how they aspire to “secretly” (20) and “suddenly” (21) meet the silent listener. The alliteration promotes the struggle present in communicating with someone with a lost identity, as it can be difficult to gain a sense of trust after drastic events. Moreover, imagery through the word choice of “long, lonely avenue of elms” (22) is present in the longest verse of the poem. This setting emits vibes of isolation. The impact of a loss identity is ongoing: individuals can suppress their thoughts and lose their ability to express themselves. The idea of an unwritten letter is proven through this idea, as there are individuals who wish to guide those who have experienced a loss of their identity. Unfortunately, trust is difficult to form and it can be impossible for others to assist those who have no
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