The poem, Suicide Note, by Janice Mirikitani, is an educative poem that shows the importance of acknowledging the interests of children in modern society. The main character in the poem is an Asian girl that commits suicide by jumping from the window of her dormitory. She expressed her frustrations and the reasons behind her suicide in the letter. Some of her main reasons for committing suicide included the pressure she received from her parents to perform well in school and their lack of interest in her abilities and interests. In this poem, the girl expresses her misery as she strived to meet the requirements of her parents and their enormous pressure in ensuring that she achieved the dreams they had for her. They failed to recognize that she had her interests and a life to live. Her letter helps us reason whose fault it was that she committed suicide and who was to blame for her death. In the world where the cases of suicide among the youth are increasing every day, it is important to review the roles parents and the society play in promoting the occurrence of such incidents.
One of the factors that that becomes clear in the poem is the fact that her parents discriminated her because of her gender. It seemed a disappointment that she was not born a boy. in the poem she says, If only I were a son, shoulders broad as the sunset threading through pine expressing her parents interest in a son. From these lines, we learn the fact that that her parents had wished to have a son and were disappointed by her being a daughter. They gave her the expectations of a boy and expected her to achieve the glory as a boy would. In some communities, the gender of the child is an important issue to the parents and influences how they treat them. While the boy child is seen as an heir to the glory of the family, the girl child has little value to the family and usually is a victim prejudice and suffering. The poem addresses such cultures where the girl child has to behave like a boy with her interests and differences of her gender becoming irrelevant to the community and her parents. The gender of the child determines the value the child has in the family. This poem fights for equal rights of both genders at a family level and shows the importance of treating all children with respect and equality.
Another thematic concern revealed in the poem is the acknowledgement of the abilities of a child. One of the reasons the parents of this girl are constantly pressuring her is her poor performance in school. Her poor grades become the focus of these parents who do not appreciate her abilities but instead focus on her weaknesses and poor abilities. The increasing pressure for he to perform in her academics regardless of her abilities makes her feel rejected and despised. In her depression, she believes that suicide would help her stop embarrassing her parents. This poem helps parents learn the importance of learning the abilities and interests of their children and appreciating them. Failure to appreciate these abilities causes pressure and depression in the children and makes them nervous. Parents should concentrate on the abilities of their children and make them feel appreciated to help them feel appreciated.
This poem has many features that make it appealing to the reader. The writer, Janice Mirikitani, uses various literary devices to make it appealing to the reader. One of the most common literary devices used in the poem is repetition. She uses repletion to create emphasis on her real feelings about issues in the society. Phrases like not strong enough, not bright enough and not good enough, constantly appear in the poem to reveal her feelings about her discrimination. She also uses metaphors and symbolism to facilitate the readers view to these issues. Metaphors like each failure a glacier, and each disappointment ice above my river, help in revealing her true feelings about various issues in life. She further uses symbolism to promote the reader's view of her view. For instance, she compares the girl child to a sparrow and the boy child to a pine. This helps in promoting her ideology to the reader. The sad and depressing tone of the poem helps in arousing the emotions of the reader and helping them sympathize with the reader. These literary devices help Janice Mirikitani in capturing the attention of her readers and help in passing her message to the people in the countries.
Fairness in the family is an important step in promoting peace and mental stability of people in the family. Through her poem, Janice Mirikitani, shows how constant pressure on children to achieve beyond their ability can lead to helping disastrous outcomes. People in the country have the needs of the society. She focuses on how disappointments led to the decision to commit suicide. The disappointment is clearly expressed her disappointments as her attempts to impress her parents failed. The accumulation of these disappointments made her believe that she death was her only escape from her misery.
Kirszner, Laurie G, and Stephen R. Mandell. Literature: Reading, Reacting, Writing, Compact. Boston: Wadsworth, 2007. Print. p. 683
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