Touching Bottom VS Chrysanthemum Essay - 1463 Words



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Touching Bottom VS Chrysanthemum

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Text Preview The need to protect usually brings strength in many people, although sometimes overdoing yourself can bring weakness. The protection and values are strong symbols in both short stories. “The Chrysanthemums” is cleverly titled, as the flower is used to symbolize herself and her values, so her need to protect it is strong. Elisa’s flower portray all her hard work, all she strives for; her perfect goal. When she saw her flowers on the side of the road, she felt a piece of her had shattered. Ian had become the item of value and protection in “Touching Bottom”, when she let him go she tried her hardest, pushed harder than she had been pushing, to save him. She found “no time to breathe, no need to breathe.” She allows Ian to claw at her legs, shares her protection of a towel with him when she reaches the shore, and she cradles him and loves him. The flowers and the child are both strong symbols of value, the utimate goal to protect.      The protection is relatively related to the changes brought in the story, as both changes were closely placed to the change. In “The Chrysanthemums” Elisa finds change after she changes her clothes, the dress being a symbol of change for herself. While wearing her roughed up gardening attire, she is a strong woman. As soon as Elisa changes into her fancy clothes, she literally changes her whole attitude. She seems as though she doesn’t know what to do with herself; while waiting for her husband she sits patiently on the porch. She changed from the strong woman in the beginning into a sad, little lady who was “crying weakly – like an old woman.” The change in ‘Touching Bottom” is quite contrary.  There’s a realization that happens in the woman’s mind as she touches the bottom; she becomes a different, stronger woman. From the beginning of the story we find her to be a weak and fearful woman who is trying to achieve a goal of being an excellent swimmer, and once she touches the bottom, she tries harder, thinks more, and becomes more... Show More

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