The White Heron And Cathedral Literary Devices

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Stories and poems utilize literary devices to deepen the meanings of their tales and keep the reader thinking. “The White Heron” by Sarah Orne Jewett, “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien, and “Cathedral” by Raymond Carver exemplify masterful use of symbols in their stories. The symbols in these stories further expand the character’s narratives and drive a more meaningful message to the reader. “The White Heron” follows a young girl, Slyvia, who encounters a hunter searching for the coveted white heron. Being a girl with little companions besides her cow, she finds fancy with the hunter and you believe that she will hand over the innocent bird to the man. But in the last moments, she vows to hide the bird, and the hunter dejectedly leaves. …show more content…

Slyvia’s best friend, her cow, represents her strong connection with nature. When playing a fun game of hide and seek with her companion she finds her and “only laughed when she came upon Mistress Moolly at the swamp-side, and urged her affectionately homeward with a twig of birch leaves” (1). Sylvia never finds anger with nature, but sees the animals as friends. The hunter is the direct antithesis of Sylvia’s reverence towards nature. He wants to own it, while she wants to find harmony. The white heron in this story symbolizes the sanctity and innocence of nature. When Slyvia is finally confronted with an opportunity to sell out the bird to her esteemed hunter “she remembers how the white heron came flying through the golden air and how they watched the sea and the morning together, and Sylvia cannot speak; she cannot tell the heron’s secret and give its life away” (8). Nature is completely vulnerable to how humans decide to treat it. …show more content…

The story follows the narrator encountering his wife’s friend Robert, who is blind, and assimilating his prejudices throughout the encounter. When the story begins the narrator is more than closed off to the idea of the blind man visiting his home. He is uncomfortable with Robert’s knowledge of him because he does not wish to associate himself with a blind man, a condition which he looks down upon. When Robert arrives, he attempts to be friendly to the narrator, a sentiment that is little reciprocated. While never encountering a blind man, he has many preconceived notions prior to his arrival. He expresses one saying “I’d always thought dark glasses were a must for the blind. Fact was, I wish he had a pair. At first glance, his eyes looked like anyone else’s eyes. But if you looked close, there was something different about them … Creepy” (5). He perceives what he does not understand as wrong or unnatural. That is why, when the story progresses and they watch the program regarding the cathedrals, his reaction is important. As the night winds down, and the wife falls asleep, the two men are left with each others’ company. When Robert apologizes for monopolizing the evening with chatter between him and the wife, the narrator responds, “‘that’s all right,’ I said. Then I said, ‘I’m glad

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