Kool Aid Wino

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February 1, 2013 Literature Analysis: “The Kool-Aid Wino” In the short story, “The Kool-Aid Wino” by Richard Brautigan carries a moral of one shouldn’t dwell on what he or she doesn’t have, but they should cherish what they do have. In the story, readers are introduced to a young boy who uses Kool-Aid to ignore the troubles of home. Brautigan uses not only an interesting combination of words, imagery, and figurative language but also characterization to convey the theme of his work. The readers see the first use of the unfamiliar pairing of words within the second paragraph of the short story, “He looked up at me from underneath a tattered revolution of old blankets…” (2) The words are used to emphasize the disgusting state that the cover was in. The author, while he could have written a simple form of the statement such as, “torn blankets” or “ripped covers”, uses these words to express exactly how poor the boy was living. The use of the word “revolution” also seems as if the blankets weren’t exactly unappreciated. The blanket proves to be much more than just an old, worn blanket but an protection against what may have been outside of them. The boy may have looked at the blankets for protection while realizing that it was all his family had, instead of throwing it out like other would do. The author goes on to explain the diapers of the boy’s siblings that were in “various stages of anarchy” (8). The choice of words lets the readers know just how bad of a condition the diapers were, showing the readers just how that the “Kool-Aid wino” and his family were living. The figurative language used in this piece plays into the imagery of the story as a whole., When Brautigan uses a simile “ the car wobbled back and forth on the road as if the driver were having an epileptic seizure” (14) to show just how abused to car really was in town. But yet the grocer continued
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