Useless Boys Poem Analysis

1113 Words5 Pages

The poem, Useless Boys,is one that portrays a feeling of indignation, rebellion and finally, understanding by two boys who grew up with bitter views of their fathers’ onerous jobs. The narrator believes that the only reason his father stays at his job is for the money. In his naivety the son does not realize that at times living selfishly is the way things have to be. Sometimes commitments are made in a self-sacrificial and cowardly manner. No matter how “wrecking” his father’s career, he stays in order to provide for his family. When an individual sees that making a commitment can bring about an undesirable outcome, such as the unhappiness and tiredness of the fathers in the poem.]m he may run from making commitments all together. By renouncing …show more content…

In the first stanza, the speaker reflects bitingly on his father’s commitment to his joyless job in an “automotive warehouse”. The narrator attitude to his father's commitment is obvious primarily in the imagery he chooses to express his distaste at his father’s choice to work for a paycheque, rather than for his own fulfillment. “A pay cheque over his mouth” suggests that his father hates his job but does not complain about, perhaps because the money to support his family is more important than his own happiness. However, the son does not respect this choice or his father’s commitment to support his family. Rather, he sees this job as shackles, as slavery, the “clocks stretched around his legs” revealing his resentment at his father working to “get his time in”. The fact that perhaps both he and his father regard this job like serving time in a prison is evident in the phrase “his 20 year stint”. To add to this, the juxtaposition of the images of the “north end of the city” and “warehouse” with the temporary beauty of the “field that for a few weeks every summer is full of daisies” reflects the idea of the temporary freedom from work that having lunch outside provided, as well as the contrast between the freedom from commitment the son desires, and his father’s

Open Document