Final Poem, First Thoughts

For the poem “a smile”, my initial reaction is that the work is very confusing. There is no rhyme scheme nor stanza form, so the entire work seems very inconsistent. This also gives me the reaction of the extreme complexity of the poem. Since there is no rhyme scheme nor stanza form, it is very “busy”.

Throughout the poem, I conjured many questions as to what exactly the poet is speaking of or about. Why is the poet so negative? Especially at the end? Why does the end of the poem seem more negative than the rest? Does the mood of the poem go from peaceful to hopeless? Why is the poet such a “Debby-downer”?

I think this poem is about someone being left by their lover, or a loved one such as :girlfriend, mother, friend etc. This is what I believe because at the begging of the poem the author seems peaceful and describing something joyful. Then as the poem goes on he becomes negative and describes negative things. He also talks of paying a price. This price being a smile which I assume is a symbol.

I think the allusions you need to know to understand this poem better is the allusions within the second stanza. These allusions include:

But who are we to question fate

when we are but a cog.

The dynamo of night1 goes on,

no stars, just us and fog.

I think this poem is very important in understanding the entire work as a whole better because, the first line in the second stanza in my opinion suggests that you cannot control fate. Therefor he is telling the reader, your life will play out however fate wants it to play out.  The third line is saying but life goes on, no matter how resentful it may be. And the fourth line is saying, it may not be glamorous, but it will go on. The second to last stanza is also very important in the understanding of the meaning of this poem.

The stage is set; now time will see:

To do to don’t but never try.

We must go on, we must be strong.

The last line in this poem is saying, “yeah you’re life is miserable now, but you have to keep living, and live life to the fullest.”

 

Image result for smile

Projeckt 1065

Projekt 1065 takes place in Germany during World War II. The main character, 13 year old Micheal O’Shaunessy, is the son of the Irish ambassador to Germany. His family are spies for the allies, and relay information like war plans and locations of high valued targets, to the allied forces. Micheal, in order to stay non-suspicious, and get more information, is part of the Hitler youth. One of his fellow Hitler youth has blueprints to a jet air plane, that could drastically change the war. Micheal, in order to intercept these blue prints has to become more involved in the Nazi effort. This entails Micheal to do tasks ordered by Hitler and the Nazi regime. One of these tasks includes burning books. During this book burning, Micheal’s best friend and school mate Fritz refuses to burn his book. Fritz then starts to get beat up by an SS Officer, and Micheal rushes to Fritz’s side.

Micheal does something extremely admirable in this moment. Not knowing the consequence, or the fate of Fritz or himself, he rushes to help his friend. By doing this he could put himself in danger, as well as his family. Not only was Fritz being beat up by an armed SS Officer, there were others nearby as well as dozens of Hitler youth around him. These Hitler youth were brainwashed to sacrifice their life for Hitler and the Nazi cause. This would include beating or killing a fellow Hitler youth that has betrayed their leader.

People always say they would do the right thing in a life threatening situation. But when you are actually there and you are left waiting to make the decision: watch the event continue and see what happens, and I’ll be safe, or step into the unknown and take action. I feel as though many people would be more likely to not risk their life, and just  stay safe. Most I assume would save themselves before they save others. Micheal on the other hand, without hesitation fends for Fritz.

This part of the story really surprised me. The suspense of the scene mixed with the surprising admiration of Micheal created the strongest reaction from me throughout the entire story.

Another instance in which Micheal displays this same surprising courageousness is when the Ally fighter pilot goes down. When an allied pilot is shot down, Micheal is put on the Nazi search party to to find the pilot. When found, he’d be tortured for information, and eventually killed. During the search, Micheal finds the pilot. Micheal learns the pilot’s name is Simon, he is from England, and he is a Jew. These circumstances put him and his family at even more risk than before.

He then leads the group away from the search party in order to get the pilot to safety. Once the search party is away from the pilot, Micheal hides the injured pilot in a haystack in a nearby barn. If the Nazi’s found that Micheal had did this, he would surely be executed along with his family. He risked himself and everyone he loved for another human being he didn’t even know. This was an extremely admirable act that grabbed my attention as a reader, as well as gave my respect even more so to the character of Micheal.

Throughout the entire story, Micheal shows his true character by helping multiple individuals, some he doesn’t even know. But the overall plot of the story is based around Micheal’s efforts in the war. He risks everything he loves in order to save the world and prevent the Nazi desires to take effect in the world. The secretive Projekt 1065 is known by Micheal to be a war changing plan for the Nazis. If successful, Projekt 1065 would surely end in a Nazi victory. Being the courageous individual that Micheal is, he takes action, risking everything for well being of the future of the Earth.