The Path to Heaven's Gate

562 Words3 Pages
The Path to Heavens Gates Heaven, like any destination, has multiple paths which lead there; some rough and strenuous, others Straightforward and somewhat effortless. Through the use of a powerful metaphor, Langston Hughes’s poem Mother to Son perfectly depict a journey that has been complex and extremely challenging – all while offering some insight into journeys quite the opposite. The Stairway metaphor serves as the foundation for the poem; it represents life. The condition of the stairway denotes the quality of life. Through a detailed epilogue, the mother describes her flight of steps; ones which have presented countless obstacles, caused constant pain, and created a sense of uncertainty. She declares “life for me ain’t been no crystal stair”. In fact, it’s been quite agonizing. She’s encountered splinters and tacks. She’s faced darkness which brought insecurity, hesitation, and fear. As a result of boards torn up, she’s dealt with a lack of support and resources. Yet, while facing all these obstacles, she continues “reachin’ landin’s and turnin’ corners” – mostly due to leaps of faith. She aware that her son is likely to face similar injustices – as most blacks did. But she encouraged him to fight on, because at the end of the staircase, there’s a better place; a place attainable only through suffering and the obedience of God. On the other hand, there exists the “Crystal Stairway”. A staircase that offers all the luxuries that life has, and presents little to none of its set-backs. It’s maintenance on a regular basis. It’s translucent, so it always provides light and a clear view of direction. Its stairs are sturdy and gentle to walk on. It is accepted and treasured by the public. This was the life of many white Americans; the access to the American dream and the privilege to be first class citizens. In spite of the fact that this staircase

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