Thick & Thin Essay

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Resentments & Regrets: An Examination of Losing Family Relationships Through Poetry Family relationships tend to get complicated, and often over time becomes fragile like fine china. Stubborn resentments that build up over time within a family from past wrongs and miss-steps will inevitably lead to pain, loss, and regret; and like a neglected infection that leads to amputation, the pain is overwhelming intangible yet set deep within the body and consumes the mind. Rachel Hadas eloquently illustrates this belief in the fragility of family relationships and the consequences of destroying them in her poem “Thick and Thin,” where in only 18 short lines and 103 powerful words, she delivers this affirmation of her own regret, this sorrowful plea to the heavens for help, and this lonely apology letter written to the lost, written for the lost. Hadas demonstrates mastery at capturing emotion in her writing through her thoughtfully chosen usage of diction, sounds, and images, specifically emphasizing the role of time while cleverly playing with the dual means of words, such as “thick” and “thin”. She artfully delivers traditionally warm and happy images of family memories with lines like “fingerprints, palm-prints, even marks of teeth” (line 8), while at the same time exuding only the tangibly painful emotions that come from losing relationships with family. “Thick and Thin” as a poem reads almost like an ominous warning written by everyone who has ever walked this lonely path, for all those who have yet to walk it. Diction is the first literary tool Hadas employs to achieve the amazingly real emotions of broken family relationships in the poem “Thick and Thin”, and three words stand out from the rest. Starting from the very first lines of both stanzas, Hadas emphasizes the concept of time; writing, “Time thickens/Time thins” (lines 1 & 10) to show that unresolved

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