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Writers Statement Page 2-3 The Beginning of the Future Page 4-5 A Journey to Canterbury Page 6-7 The Legendary Beowulf Page 8-10 Sir Gwain and the Green Knight Page 11 A Day to Remember Page 12-15 Energy Innovation Page 16-18 Frankenstein Page 19-20 The Curse of Shalott Page 21-22 The Lady of Shalott Page 23-25



Amy Boehm I have written many different pieces this semester, ranging from critical analysis to prose pieces. I have learned many new concepts and struggled with some as well. Within my portfolio I have included nine pieces, which best illustrate my writing capabilities. Being able to work with a variety of challenges is important within writing, knowing how to reach the reader and pull them into the work is what highlights a good writer. The hardest piece for me to complete was the literary analysis of “The Lady of Shalott.� I was not extremely fond of this poem and needed to discuss the underlying symbols within Tennyson’s work. I feel as if I completed this paper to the best of my ability, but seemed to have fallen short. I also struggled with including everything which was required of me. My paper jumped around and was very hard to follow. Throughout this year I have also struggled with transitions and stand alone quotations. Many of my papers included poor transitions; this is something that was definitely a challenge to me this year. I have a hard time finding ways to connect my thoughts. Through my struggles I also had strengths. I think that my greatest strength in writing is my vivid imagination. I find it much easier to create a fictional character, rather than to research a non fictional one. My favorite paper that I have written this year was the Chaucer Character Essay. I felt this was a strength to me, because I was able to research Chaucer for my research paper and then create my own version of his Canterbury Tales. I like making up peoples lives and creating their future. Creating a story is something that is much more appealing to me. I am very descriptive in my writing and enjoy giving characters many different aspects. Spicing up my stories is something that is very important to me.


I have also learned to incorporate new skills into my writing, such as writing good complex sentences and achieving a good balance within my works. Knowing what is expected from me as a writer helps to push myself to my fullest in order to achieve what is being asked of me. I have also learned that I should proofread, proofread, proofread! Within my papers I have been known to make a few errors that could easily be corrected by proofreading. Allowing others to critic your work is also something that I have learned to be important to me as a writer. Taking criticism helps me to realize my writing flaws and allow me to change and grow from the mistakes that I have made. Writing a wide variety of papers has helped me to realized what aspects of writing that I am good at and which one that I tend to struggle with. I have realized where my strengths lie within my pieces and what sort of things that I am not very good at. Understanding the basic principles of writing helps me to better understand what the assigned topic is. Writing this collection of papers has been a learning experience for me and I am happy I have retained the knowledge that I have throughout this semester.


THE BEGINNING OF THE FUTURE Receiving a first-class education has always been a blessing which my parents have bestowed upon me. I have attended Catholic schools my entire life and feel as if I have received the best education possible. Going to college and being able to continue into my future with a specialized nursing degree is a goal which I have set for myself. Since I was a young child and people would ask “what do you want to do when you grow up” I would always reply with “I want to help people, I want to make someone smile.” When searching careers, I knew nursing was for me. The idea of fulfilling a career in nursing really set in when I visited the Saint Vincent de Paul Organization for a group service project with my softball team. While serving breakfast and delivering donated clothes to the homeless men and women of downtown Indianapolis, I had a chance to talk to a man whose words have changed my life. It was a cold day and this man was sitting by himself as I approached. At first glance he looked very cold and over all just worn out. I asked him about his family and his friends, and he responded by telling me that he was no longer in contact with his family and had very few friends. In fact, he told me I was the first person to talk to him as if he were a real person in weeks. As we sat and exchanged words, almost an hour passed and I felt as if I had known this man my entire life. My team and I were about to leave when the man asked if we had any gloved in our van, which we could exchange for his old worn ones with holes. We did not have any, yet I could not bear to picture this man sleeping outside with no gloves. I gave the man the gloves that I was wearing and told him to keep them, so that he could remember me. The exhausted man began to cry and told me that I was an angel sent to him by God, and that he was blessed to be able to spend time talking to one of God’s angels.


This moment was life changing for me. It allowed me to realize how a small task could mean the world to someone. It opened up my eyes and again assured me that nursing was the right occupation for me. I had never been in close contact with someone who was that much less fortunate than me. I had known this man for under and hour, and he influenced me more than people I have known my entire life. I wish to become a person who would be able to make such an impact on a person’s life in such a small amount of time. The feeling that I have received from this tired, old, worn out man is a goal in which I would love to implant in every single persons life to which I come into contact. Going into the nursing field would help not only my patients, but it would help me. It would provide me with the satisfaction of helping all people. Families would look to me to make their child’s illness go away. Thinking of these simple scenarios over and over in my head makes nursing much more appealing of a future career for me. Influencing others and being aware of the impact I am capable of making sets me on a path of hard work in order to make my future dreams of becoming a nurse a reality.


A JOURNEY TO CANTERBURY My name is Lazarus the Shepherd, son of Nicholas the Baker. I am a shepherd from the small village of Monoso. My hair is long and sometime untamed. My build is short, only standing five feet tall. I have many hobbies which I enjoy, and a wife as beautiful as the sun. I am preparing for a pilgrimage to Canterbury along with many others. I consider most my friends and other I am to be introduced. I am loving and caring and hope to consider theses people as my flock. I wasn’t to lead and provide others with my wise yet misleading advice. It was the first day of the tenth month when our pilgrimage was to begin. Dreamers, Doctors, Knights, and Bakers alike, all gathered packed and waiting in front of Tuvie’s Tavern. We all stood catching our last drinks before we would embark on our three month journey to Canterbury. As we walked, I conversed with new friends and reminisced with old. I found myself being thought of by others as a leader. I generously took the commitment with open arms. I gave advice to the bakers and tried to instill reality into the minds of the dreamers. I lead and instructed. Many came to me for guidance and placed life decisions in my hands. These men were my flock and my new family, they trusted me, and I was dedicated to them. One long month had passed before things began to get rough. Food became scarce and pilgrims became weak. I cared for my friends and tried to keep their spirits high. The weather had changed from the warm fall sunshine to the rigid snow storms of the winter quickly. Many men turned back toward home while many keep going. Shelter was hard to find and three men; a baker and two scientists had died. I felt it was part of my obligation to burry these men and to honor my commitment I had previously made. I missed my family and could think of nothing but my youngest son Johnathon; he was having his second birthday while I was gone. My mental


picture of Johnathon on his birthday kept me focused and most importantly alive while making it to Canterbury. I survived the treacherous pilgrimage and consider myself blessed. In my opinion, the journey was both a challenge and strength. I was challenged to survive the obstacles which came my way. Through the weather, fatigue, poverty, and hardships I survived and could tell my tale. I also consider the pilgrimage to be strength because I led many people and provided them with advice. I feel blessed to have gone on the pilgrimage. It has made me appreciate my family and my loved ones. I have a greater understanding of life. I will live everyday as if it were to be my last. The pilgrimage was rough, yet completely life changing.


THE LEGENDARY BEOWULF Beowulf, a poem written in the eighth century by an unknown author, is considered to be one of the greatest examples of an epic poem. Beowulf embodies many aspects of the AngloSaxon time period, such as: a strong warrior culture, exile from ones home land, and loyalty and bravery until death. The Anglo-Saxons also believed in the role of fate, which can be seen in the lives of their heroic figures. Religious symbolism can be seen throughout the story, which shows that additions to the story have been made as history has been developed its religious understanding. A legendary hero is a character in an epic poem, which is revealed as being larger than life. Beowulf is a character who lived during the Anglo-Saxon time period. He has the strength of thirty men and boasts endlessly of his deeds. He does not introduce himself by name, which indirectly stated his honorable nature. An example of this is “In his far off home Beowulf, Higlac’s follower and the strongest of the Geats – Greater and stronger than anyone anywehere in this worlds.” (ll. 90-93) From this text Beowulf is bring introduced as the strongest man in the world, creating an epic hero and giving him heroic characteristics, such as strength, loyalty, and bravery, The Geats look up to Beowulf and view him with respect. The legendary idea is also being exposed within the text on lines 488-489. This excerpt portrays Beowulf as being larger than life and a great leader and in turn receiving the glory in which he seeks throughout the poem and eventually leads to his death. Religious elements are present which provide evidence that Beowulf was not written solely by the original author. Many new scenarios were added with time, through oral tradition. The original author would have based the poem mainly on the role of fate and the warrior aspect, which the society would have valued at the time. Within the context of the story many biblical


references and clues become present, showing that Beowulf , when published in print, was altered by scribes throughout history. Grendel is being describes as a descendent of Cain, Adam and Eve’s eldest son “Conceived by a pair of those monsters born of Cain, murderous creatures banished by God, punished forever for their crime of Abel’s death.” (ll. 20-23) Grendel is being made known as a descendent of Cain, seeing as Cain murdered his brother Abel so he would obtain his families wealth. Grendel like Cain was exiled to live a life of solidarity and terror. Another connection of religious symbolism is Grendel terrorizing the Herrot for twelve years and three mortal battles being fought within the epic. Twelve and three are both viewed holy numbers which are repeated sporadically throughout the Christian bible. Looking at thesexs examples, the conclusion is made that the final Beowulf was not written by the original author, because the Angles lived in a polytheistic society without knowledge of the Christian ideas found in the bible. Beowulf is depicted as heroic, kindhearted and honorable leader. He travels long distances to defeat monsters destroying far away villages. He also challenged Grendel, and Grendel’s mother, and came out victorious in both. Beowulf loved the praise, attention, and respect that came with his bravery. As time went on, Beowulf began to recognize how great he was. He became a very arrogant man, but still a man with a kind heart, who still cared for his people. He was crowned King and held the throne for many years. He had many followers which led to his overconfident nature. When Beowulf was very old and weak he was challenged to a duel with a dragon. Even though not physically up to the task he would not let any of his men help him in the battle; he wanted to glory for himself. With this, Beowulf was nearly killed as he was abandoned by his men. In his fight for glory he came up short, and eventually died from the


wounds he had obtained from the dragon. The battle of good verses evil is being exposed, and Beowulf let his evil search for glory over take him, leading to his death. Beowulf is a classic example of an epic hero who let pride get the best of him. His hubris interfered with the way he viewed his opponent. He is viewed through his strengths but is killed because of his weakness. It is important to understand this underlying context when reading, analyzing, and understanding the entire epic as a whole. His ability to be a great warrior and leader actually leads to his demise; the true definition of an epic hero. The great irony of this poem truly makes it a glorious epic; one of epic proportion.


SIR GWAIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT “Gwain and the Green Knight” is the story of a heroic figure, the Green Knight, and of a knight on a quest, Gwain. The Green Knight comes to the village, because he hears of Arthur’s good reputation. He comes to challenge King Arthur to a game, blow for blow. Gwain vails to take King Arthur’s place, since his life is worthless, he would not be missed if he died. Gwain beheads the Green Knight. Critics believe that Gwain had passed the test of the Green Knight. He is challenged by the Green Knight to a game, blow for blow. It was a challenge to see whether of not he would go through with the beheading or if he would just say that he would. Many see Gwains performance as a failure, because he rejects the roles of a typical knight during the Romantic time period. He is knightly as the story begins, but then starts to value fortune and his own life: by accepting the exchange and the belt. “For any reading that treats Gwains performance in Camelot a failure of some kind… by ignoring a crucial passage from Bertilak’s speech at the green chapel.” Morgan le Fay, Arthur’s sister describes it as humiliating revelations about Gwain and things which happened at the Round Table. Sir Gwain and the Green Knight is a story which is told about a successful knight who beheads the Green Knight in his own challenge. Gwain shows courage, nobility, and respect throughout the story, but eventually throws traditional views of chivalry out. He values his own life and accepts the belt in order to preserve his own life. The Green Knight also shows courage respect and nobility. He sticks to his traditional views of chivalry and keeps his word throughout the story. He allows Gawain to take the first blown and is beheaded in the process.


September 12, 2001 A DAY TO REMEMBER Dear Diary, September 11, 2001 is a day that will not soon be forgotten. The events of yesterday will go into history books where they will live forever. My name is Samantha Barns and I am a 29 year old business women. I had recently landed a job working for the Regus Business Centers on the 93rd floor of the South Town of the World Trade Centers. The position was amazing; it was everything that I had ever hoped it would be. I had always dreamed that I would work in a position that would allow me to help people and working at the Employment Agency did just that. Seeing the unemployed men and women come into my life in hopes of providing a better life for their family and leaving with a job made waking up for work each morning worth it. The morning of September 11, 2001 was a bright and sunny morning, but for some reason my husband asked me to take the day off and spend it with him. We have been married for a little over six months now and my career keeps me very busy, so a day off would be well worth it. Yet I could not bring myself to miss a day of work. My husband too worked inside of the World Trade Centers, but he worked on the 78th floor of the North Tower. We rode to work together that day and before going into work we told one another that we loved each other, kissed, and agreed to meet for lunch at a near by pizza place, little did I know this would be the last moment I would be able to see my husband alive. I made it up the elevator unto my office around 7:15 a.m. I made myself a cup of coffee, opened my laptop and began working as I would on any other day. 8:46 a.m. the loudest crash I have ever heard in my life sounded. I looks out of my window and discovered that the Northern Tower was blistering with flames. I did not know what was happening, thoughts were racing through my head, my husband, where was he at, was he out


of the building, maybe he had forgotten sometime inside of his car, yet through all of these thoughts I had never once considered that he would still be inside, while the building was on fire. I was certain that they would have evacuated by now. I called his cell phone over and over, and I have received voicemail each time. I left numerous messages, screaming, asking and needing to know where he was at. James Housman, a man in my office, had come over to inform me that a plan had just flown into the North Tower and that the flames were so blistering hot that the building would not stand much longer. He also informed me that we would need to evacuate our building in order to avoid colossal debris which would be coming off of the other town, as it fell. I was in shock. There is no way that the building could collapse, it was made of steel and steel could not bend. I began walking down the stairs after given the order to evacuate. I was moving as fast as I would, but the stairs were overloaded with people frantically trying to escape the building. 9:03 a.m. I was walking down the stairs and the building began to rumble. I let out a shrieking scream, and instantly knew that another plan had just struck. This time it had been the Southern Tower, the building I was in. I could only think I am a newly wed, I want to live in a house in the country, I want to have children, lots of children, I want to see my grandchildren and attend their sporting events, I am not ready to die yet, I have so much more to live for. By the time the second plane had hit I had make it down to the 26th floor. I was almost there. People were racing down the stair, fighting for their lives, hoping to live another day. I will never forget the sight of those people acting like maniacs, fending for themselves and not caring who they stepped on to be the first out. A women in a wheel chair, and a man on crutches had passes me as they were being carried by complete strangers. Strangers, who too had thoughts of dying, yet paused to help those who could not help themselves. Almost forty-five minutes had passed as I


had been trying to make my way down all of the stairs. I was now on the 10th floor, so close to the rest of my life. If I could just make it out of the building I would see my husband and we would live in the country and have children, we would live happily ever after. It took me nearly seven minutes from then to get to the lobby of my building where firefighters were everywhere assisting in every possible way, saying “Get out now the building is going to collapse!� Their faces looked scared and each risking their life to save mine, I was grateful. I walked out of the building. The North Tower was skill standing, so I had hoped my husband would have made it out. I asked the police and firefighters if they had seen my husband, Grant Barns. I received the same information from all of them, they did not know who he was, but many people had already died and I needed to get as far away as possible because both buildings were going to collapse. 9:59 a.m. everyone was recklessly running down the street, the South Tower was plummeting to the ground. It looked as if a giant had just stepped on the building with his foot. It fell quickly and debris covered everything. The pavement was not visible, windows were not clear, and people were completely black. I was running quickly away from the building. Running anywhere but there, the sights were ghastly. People were on fire, jumping out of windows and falling to their death. Death lined the streets and sirens echoed. Nothing I had ever encountered was as horrifying as this. 10:28 a.m. the North Tower collapsed. Thousands are predicted to be dead. Covered in debris, I fell to the ground. My husband was inside of that tower, and I had a feeling that he had not made it out. Grant was a kind man; he probably let everyone go out in front of him. Like the men inside the stairwell of my building carrying the women would was in a wheel chair, I imagine Grant did the same. Living the moment was how he lived his life. Always living in the now, relying on me to look to the future. We were a good pair. We completed each other. I


received a call from the hospital informing me that Grant was there, but while inside of the ambulance, he had died. I would come and identify his body as soon as possible. My husband was dead, I did not know if I could walk. I could not get up off of the ground. I made it to the hospital awhile after receiving the call. It was Grant, cold, covered in debris, and dead. September 11, 2001, a day of chaos, a day of hate. Many lived and many died, yet none will be forgotten. The lives of each will remain within my heart every single day. I play that America can over come and bring justice to all of the families who lost loved ones, as I have. I feel their pain but cannot help to smile, knowing that my husband is now my guardian angel. He will forever be with me, helping me through hard days and giving me strength to stop and smell the roses every once in awhile. I write this journal entry so that we may never forget and that everyone can realize how brave the men and women who surrounded the World Trade Centers that day were. September 11, 2001 is a day that will not soon be forgotten.



There are many methods of losing weight, which involve strenuous exercise and self sacrifice. Although some of these methods are proven to have great results, people refuse to take time and energy that is required to maintain full results. This has caused for a serious disease commonly know as obesity. This is a manmade problem and a 100% curable disease. Some causes of this disease include pollution, sleep deprivation, air conditioning, video games, movies, and television, are all becoming very popular in this fast pace, persistent, and needy society. This problem affects all people, with obesity rates reaching an all time high it is becoming acceptable among Americans. Although it is the new “cool� thing to be, it is virtually destroying healthy, long lasting years of life. Dying of obesity is the number one killer of Americans, with nearly 300,000 people falling victim each year. It is also very disappointing to know that this is the number one fatal disease in America today, when focusing so much time and money on new medical advances in order to increase life expectancy. Food is the constant source which keeps obesity in reining power. From young children to adults it has not been moderately consumed or controlled. Teaching young children to over indulge rather than to learn the necessities of life, such as crawling and walking, is what keeps obesity in a continuous cycle. Rather than it being used in moderation, food has become a source of comfort. Starting from early childhood, a parent will give their child a bottle to stop their crying even when it does not necessarily mean the child is hungry. Schools have also tried to take charge in reducing obesity. Eliminating soda machines and using low fat products has been


the main objective. Although, this can only work if parents continue the trend at home and continue to persuade their children to eat healthy and exercise often. As many people increase their work load and become involved in more activities fast food has become the way to go. It has reeled in many Americans by soliciting advertisements and providing a fast and low priced meal. Although fast food may be convenient and very delicious it is also contributing to the number one cause of death in America. Given that obesity is a growing problem, we modestly propose that all obese men and women should be given the duty of running in a wheel, similar to that of a hamster wheel. In order to receive a drivers license it will be required that each person be measured and weighed. There will also be a nationally known chart describing the acceptable weight limits for each height group. If a person is not “up to par� then they will be taken into custody and made to run in order to provide an alternate source of energy. Once a person has run and paid their dues to society by providing the energy needed and cut their weight to meet requirements, they will be able to return back to their homes. There are many advantages to this new form of technology. The power that the people on the wheel would provide would produce energy. This energy would reduce the amount of carbon emissions, and lower the problem of global warming. Lowering global warming would save the the many aspects of the environment. Also running on the wheel could solve the ever growing problem of homelessness. People who are homeless could also run on the wheels in order to


make some money in order to support themselves. Poverty would virtually be eliminated, due to the wheel. Every person would have the skills to obtain a proper paying job. The unemployment rate has also increased greatly due to laziness and incapability’s within the workplace. This action will prepare these lazy and incompetent people for the real world. Forcing people to run will motivate people to want to work and succeed in their lives. This will also lead to longer life expectancies because they will take better care of themselves. The wheel is a quick fix for many of the issues that we deal with in our society. Having monthly check ups would give people motivation in order to keep with their active lifestyle and while also going green!


FRANKENSTEIN Throughout Shelley’s Frankenstein, there are countless references to Milton’s Paradise Lost. Each share similarities which add to the mood of Frankenstein; portraying a dark and gothic setting helps to connect the reader to victor and his monster. Frankenstein’s monster compared himself to Satan and Adam, the main characters of Milton’s Paradise Lost. Victor creates his monster with the intent of acquiring fame and having the satisfaction of knowing that he would create life form death. Although, all his knowledge could not prepare him for when the monster would open it’s eyes and smile for the first time. Victor was scared and left the monster behind. “Like Adam, I was apparently united by no link to any other being in existence; but his state was far different from mine… he had come forth from the hands of God, a perfect creature, happy and prosperous guarded by the especial care of his creator (92).” Frankenstein’s monster begins to realize Victor has abandoned him in the text cited above. He is looking for who he really is, is he Adam or is he Satan? Living with the cottagers he is Adam, he is kind and thirsting for knowledge. All he needs is a friend. The monster confronts De Lacey, a blink man in the hopes that he will not judge him for his appearance, but for his kind nature. The monster is spotted talking to De Lacey and beaten with a stick. He doesn’t understand why they cannot see him for other than his appearance. He leaves, in search of reeking havoc on all mankind. “I like the arch-fiend, bore a hell within me; and finding myself unsympathized with, wished… to spread havoc and destruction around me, and then to have sat down and enjoyed the ruin (97).” Frankenstein’s monster has become Satan, he had no one to show him generosity, only those who judge. He commits many murders for which Victor blames himself. The monster murders many of Victor’s family members looking


down smiles upon the corpses. He has transformed, he enjoys evil and has turned away from hope. Viewing Victor Frankenstein’s lifeless body is what helps to convert the monster back from his evil ways, “But the apple was already eaten, and the angel’s arm beared to drive me from all hope.” He knows he had done evil by killing innocent people, but cannot seem to think that he will be forgiven, so he decided to go out into the woods, “Until I tell, never, never see again (157)” and eventually dies alone in the woods.


THE CURSE OF SHALOTT The island of Shallot is a beautiful place, full of willows, and lilies, and aspen. It is on the way to Camelot which is where everyone flocks in the summer to see the wonderful island and the fields thick with barley and rye. The island of Shalott has many trees and dense forests, full of vegetation that covers most of the ground. Back within the deep forest is a small grey building with four grey walls and four grey towers. Within the building, a lady lives against her will, she is imprisoned and not a soul knows that she is there. She is the Lady of Shalott and with a beautiful voice she sings her cries into the night. Her voice echoes and is heard by the men who are collecting the barley, and they whisper to themselves, “Oh, she is the Lady of Shalott.” The Lady of Shalott weaves a web of magic and beautiful colors for many days, hoping it will help her to escape. She hears a voice which whispers to her and tells her of a cure that will befall among her if she looks down toward Camelot. Unsure of what the curse would be she continues weaving uncontrollably until her web is finished. A mirror appears and hangs before her and within the mirror she views the shadows of the world. She sees people playing in the fields, a young shepherd, a group of damsels and an abbot. She loves her weaving nonetheless, but shows grievance as she looks to the reflections of the world below. She views the sun shining on the fields of barley and sees a knight riding though Shalott, near her grey building. His armor is beautiful, it shines in the sunlight, and the gems of his horse shine brightly also. The handsome knight with black curls sings out to the Lady of Shalott, “Tirra Lirra!” She hears the knight’s song and immediately stops weaving. Upon stopping, the weave is destroyed and the mirror cracks. The Lady knows now that the unknown curse is upon her. She flees from the building, running in the rain; and finds a boat which she titles “The Lady of Shalott” and rows quickly toward Camelot. Wearing a white robe lies down in the boat


and sings her last song as the current carries her toward Camelot. Singing her song, the Lady of Shalott died. Her boat drifted now toward Camelot where the townspeople came out and read the words on the side of the boat. They were stunned, they had heard of the lady, but had never seen her, and there she is now, dead. Lancelot viewed the dead women’s face and with courage, he said “She has a lovely face; God in his mercy lend her grace.”


THE LADY OF SHALOTT “The Lady of Shalott” is a Victorian poem that was first composed in 1832 and then greatly revised 1842. The 1842 version of the poem is what is often read and studied today. Tennyson used the element of magic in order to keep his poem mysterious, he does not reveal major the major outside aspects which would make this a clear poem. Within the poem, there are many symbols, such as isolation of a damsel, the mirror, the color red, night and day and the loom. These symbols show up numerous times within “The Lady of Shalott.” Knowing common symbols helps to better understand and value certain pieces of literature. The Lady of Shalott is forced to live within an isolated castle tower, she is not able to look directly outside of her window, for if she does her curse will go into effect and she will die. The isolated tower is symbolic of the struggle of women in the late 1800’s. Women were confined to domestic roles and were looked down upon if they were to leave there homes without their male companion. This is depicted by the tower and how the Lady can only indirectly view the society below. She is forced to live without love and without interaction, but only to sing her song into the night. She is known by the people of the town, for her song, but no one has ever seen her. A mirror is a symbol of distorted reality, used to depict the characters distance from society. The Lady of Shalott uses her mirror to view the outside world. From her mirror she views lovers, knights in pairs, windy rivers, and Lancelot. Tennyson depicts life outside of the castle as vivid, Camelot seems as it is a beautiful place to be. Even though her mirror shows a


clear view of the attractive Camelot below, the lady is far from it. She states “And moving through a mirror clear, That hangs before her all the year, Shadows of the world appear” This is where in the poem that she begins to move from a simple character into a character who is not satisfied with what she has, this will be her character flaw. The lady of Shalott views life as being very bright, until she views Lancelot’s reflection through her mirror. After viewing his face, she becomes upset that she cannot look outside of her window. Life is portrayed through the color red, it is repeatedly used, for example, the two knights pass in “red cloaks” and “crimson clad.” Lancelot is also described as a “red-cross knight” he is a symbol of light, because he gives the lady hope, she sees his face and is immediately takes her chance of looking outside the window. The two knights foreshadow Lancelot’s arrival and the hope within the lady. While trapped in the castle tower, the lady weaves a loom. The loom is symbolic of the tangles of her curse. She is to stay at the loom and weave night and day; if she does not weave she will be cursed. She is tangled in a curse which engulfs her character and holds her back. The loom can also be a symbol showing that her future is tangled and blurry. She does not know exactly what will happen if she looks outside of her window and does not know what other aspects that the curse might entail. Leaving the loom, her mirror is cracked from side to side and she is forever cursed. Night and day can also be used a symbol to represent that the lady is in distress whether or not to look outside the window. She knows that she will be cursed if she does but does not know what the curse will provide for her. She looks through her mirror down at society and


thinks that it would be nice to converse with those people. Night represents the curse and day represents all of the people in Camelot who she sees. In the end, she chooses to follow Sir Lancelot, but dies before she can make her way to his castle. The symbolism helps to focus on the underlying messages that the author chooses to give more meaning toward. Understanding symbols helps to provide a perceptive view to each aspect of the work. Tennyson uses the element of magic to portray most of his symbols and give the reader a sense of mystery behind the characters. Tennyson does a good job using symbolism within “The Lady of Shalott� and portrays many objects with great depth.


Amy's Portfolio  

senior year portfolio