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Bored Analysis



Author: poem of Margaret Atwood Type: poem Views: 40

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All those times I was bored

out of my mind. Holding the log

while he sawed it. Holding

the string while he measured, boards,

distances between things, or pounded

stakes into the ground for rows and rows

of lettuces and beets, which I then (bored)

weeded. Or sat in the back

of the car, or sat still in boats,

sat, sat, while at the prow, stern, wheel

he drove, steered, paddled. It

wasn't even boredom, it was looking,

looking hard and up close at the small

details. Myopia. The worn gunwales,

the intricate twill of the seat

cover. The acid crumbs of loam, the granular

pink rock, its igneous veins, the sea-fans

of dry moss, the blackish and then the graying

bristles on the back of his neck.

Sometimes he would whistle, sometimes

I would. The boring rhythm of doing

things over and over, carrying

the wood, drying

the dishes. Such minutiae. It's what

the animals spend most of their time at,

ferrying the sand, grain by grain, from their tunnels,

shuffling the leaves in their burrows. He pointed

such things out, and I would look

at the whorled texture of his square finger, earth under

the nail. Why do I remember it as sunnier

all the time then, although it more often

rained, and more birdsong?

I could hardly wait to get

the hell out of there to

anywhere else. Perhaps though

boredom is happier. It is for dogs or

groundhogs. Now I wouldn't be bored.

Now I would know too much.

Now I would know.






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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

.: :.

Biggest regret is not living life to the fullest. Thats what this poem is basically about. Read it slowly once again and you will surely understand.

| Posted on 2015-10-14 | by a guest


.: :.

Biggest regret is not living life to the fullest. Thats what this poem is basically about. Read it slowly once again and you will surely understand.

| Posted on 2015-10-14 | by a guest


.: :.

Biggest regret is not living life to the fullest. Thats what this poem is basically about. Read it slowly once again and you will surely understand.

| Posted on 2015-10-14 | by a guest


.: :.

Posted by balasubramaniam
In “Bored,” Margaret Atwood emphasizes a vexed daughter who resented not having the identical roles as those she looked up to, and not ensuring enough trust placed in her to do the identical tasks as her father did but in the end the daughter is incapable to return to her old life, this constructs a shift in tone from resentful to a nostalgic tone towards her father yet speakers in order to suggest to the reader that rue happiness consists in finding joy in the small things of life, and making it worthwhile as it lasts.
There are some great metaphors throughout the poem which revolution the tone from resentful to nostalgic. "he drove, steered, paddled" is a metaphor since in daughter life, she has never had to fight through life and find her personal way, her father has loyally guided her through it. Another Metaphor “Why do I remember is as sunnier all the time then, although it more often rained, and more birdsong?" Sun is conventionally a symbol of happiness, where as rain is the opposition, and birdsong is often a symbol of depressed. Therefore, this proves and signifies that the speaker’s desire to get her old life back so she could take pleasure in every moment of your life.
Another Concept of the poetry is the image of "graying bristles on the back of his neck" (19) depicts a picture or sense hair turning gray and this envisions that of someone dying . Then, therefore is foreshadowing of her father's death.

| Posted on 2015-09-24 | by a guest


.: :.

I agree with the last guest post on 2009-10-08. Atwood wrote this poem while her father was dying of cancer, and she uses repetition and \"myopia\" to painfully reveal regret surrounding her father\'s death. The repetition of lists of memories of actions and focus on small details show her nearsightedness in these memories. What she remembers is not a human moment between a father and daughter, but mindless activity wherein all she wanted to do was \"get the hell out of\" there. The final three lines including \"Now I would know\" signal Atwood\'s revelation of and appreciation for the brevity of life.

| Posted on 2012-03-14 | by a guest


.: :.

At first the persona adopts a childish, resentful tone, in which she reminds us that she resented not having the same roles as those she looked up to, and not having enough trust placed in her to do the same tasks as her father did. \"which I then (bored) / weeded\" is a great example of this childish tone: she won\'t let her resentful comments lie, she must remind all readers that she didn\'t enjoy the tasks at hand. However, there are some great metaphors throughout the poem which change the tone from resentful to nostalgic. The persona longs for her own carefree life back, where there was not emphasis placed on the jobs she had to do; they were merely menial tasks. \"he drove, steered, paddled\" is a metaphor for the fact that throughout the persona\'s life, she has never had to struggle through life and find her own way, her father has faithfully guided her through it. Soon after this, the persona mentions her \"myopia\", or short-sightedness. This is because she fails to see the bigger picture (or the objects further away), that he was helping her through the difficulties of life, because she was focussing on the little details, that her father wouldn\'t let her do more important jobs. She voices her true regret for the first time with, \"Why do I remember is as sunnier / all the time then, although it more often / rained, and more birdsong?\" Sun is traditionally a symbol of happiness, where as rain is the antithesis, and birdsong is often a symbol of melancholy. Her saying \"Now I wouldn\'t be bored.\" is her, voicing her will for someone to open the door to her carefree past. Saying that, \"Now I would know too much. / Now I would know.\" is referring to her knowledge that true happiness consists in finding joy in the small things of life, and making it worthwhile as it lasts. This regret could be for one of two, or both of the following reasons: that she has lost her father and now misses him, or that she is bogged down with worldly cares and longs for a simpler time. The entire poem is written in free verse, as it is almost a spillage of the persona\'s thoughts, and is not meant to have a structure or form to it.
Hope this helps someone!
-Year 12 Student

| Posted on 2011-03-17 | by a guest


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It seems you are forgetting the time period this was written in. Margaret Atwood is a postmodernist writer, and those writers often focused on making satirical impersonations of modernist writers (while the modernists wrote to find meaning and joy in everything). It is more likely that the speaker is a modernist whom Atwood is mocking. The message of the poem is truly to find joy in small things, and that the youth are short-sighted, but, the author is disinclined to feel that way.

| Posted on 2010-03-21 | by a guest


.: :.

also.... she is an idiot for not living the lfe in the moment....

| Posted on 2010-01-29 | by a guest


.: :.

A great deal of effect is gained from the syntax and diction which in turn creates a tone that shifts throughout. It starts with three word 'chunks' and repetition of the word bored (as a different homophone and parts of speech). This pattern creates very deep boredom. Then, as she says "It wasn't even boredom" and begins to really delve into her memories, the tone begins to shift. Myopia (14), or nearsightedness, is extremely important. This is the first sense of regret. She is realizing how nearsighted she was. How she didn't fully appreciate those simpler, more enjoyable times. The three word thought rythm begins to mix with longer, prettier, more affectionate sounding phrases in lines 15-17, creating more longing. Then, there is foreshadowing of her father's death with the "graying bristles on the back of his neck" (19). She states, "Why do I remember it as sunnier all the time then, although it more often
rained, and more birdsong?" (30-2) That serves as a fairly obvious indicator of how much happier times were. I am just a highschool student, but there is my input on this lovely poem.

| Posted on 2009-10-08 | by a guest




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