Free Essay

Poetic Justice

In: English and Literature

Submitted By CaverUlle
Words 973
Pages 4
Essay – Poetic Justice
“Carpe diem” is a phrase that is often used by people who are not taking anything for granted. They are living their life exactly how they want to and they do not care about the following consequences. The story “Poetic Justice” is exactly about that – when to seize the day and when not to.

Jed Cunningham is an absolute original. Jed has always been smarter than everybody else. In his younger years he stood apart and watched the world mockingly. He would always have the newest clothes only for others to envy. The fact that he was so different made his teachers uneasy. He did not do what they said and it caused the teachers to call Jed disrespectful. The truth was that they were afraid of him and his amazingly developed intelligence. “Who resolutely refused to be in with in the crowd, and gathered about him an eclectic group from deeply weird scientist to the incredibly popular and handsome head boy, a dead ringer for Pierce Brosnan” line 25-27. The quote shows how popular Jed really was. Not only for the popular teenager but also for the nerds. In terms of his popularity the sky was the limit. You can sort of compare Jed to a modern day “hipster”. Of course there had to be some consequences for his actions. Later on Jed’s life fell apart. He did not get a job, he had a wife but she left him. All the great things he did in his teenage years collapsed and he has not been able to maintain his “carpe diem” belief

The main character is feeling extremely bad about herself. She hates everything that she has become. She has become exact opposite of what she had in mind in her teenage years. A typical “soccer-mom” who does not take care of herself is what she has become. She spends all her time satisfying her family, picking up her kids from school and cooking dinner for her husband. She misses her earlier self. “Would it bring me blonde hair and tanned skin and a man who loved me rather than was used to me?”. Line 86-87. She looks back at the time she had when she was teenager only to disappoint herself more. The main character misses the no responsibility – no attachments only to have fun. She would like to know what it would have been like if Jed and her had stayed together. Would they still be adventurous or would they end up in the same situation that she currently is in. She hates that she does not know.

In their teenage years Jed and the main character became boyfriend and girlfriend. But the relationship was a bit abnormal. As any other relationship they obviously loved everything about each other. There was just something innocent that any other couple did not have. First of all they did not sleep together. Honestly they did not know why, maybe it would ruin the relationship and maybe it would not. Non-other, but themselves, knew what was going on. The two lovebirds lived in a parallel universe full of secrets and codes that no one understood. Unfortunately nothing lasts forever and they broke up. It seems like she sort of regret the breakup, seeing how her life turned out. A part of her would like to be adventurous and explore the world, but she was scared of what might happen. ”Stop. Her heart beat wildly. Stop. You were too young then and now you are to old”. Line 46-47. She needs to remind herself that she did not want to continue with Jed. That is another sign of regret.

The narrative style in the text is quite odd, because of the variation between a third person narrator and a first person narrator. It gets sort of confusing. The story is told by a third person narrator, but sometimes we are getting inside the main character’s head and hearing the story from her point of view. You sort of get the feeling that the main character is telling the story and not the narrator. The story is subjective compared to the neutral third person narrator.

There are two major themes in the text. The first one is about doing what you like and makes you happy. Life is short and is easily missed. Enjoy yourself and do not take anything for granted. Of course you must have an idea of the consequences. We saw Jed’s life get ruined by the childish idea of just doing what you want. The other theme is priorities as a teenager. Should you focus on your social life or does school need your attention? A lot of teenagers today deal with a problem like that; it is very tough to find the time to hang out with friends and have fun, while focusing on homework and getting better scholarly. You must have the courage to take a chance.

If you look “poetic justice” up in a dictionary it says: Poetic justice is a literary device in which virtue is ultimately rewarded or vice punished, often in modern literature by an ironic twist of fate. That describes Jed Cunningham’s life perfectly. Jed got amazing grades and had a bright future ahead of him.
He had the opportunity to go to every school in the country, but his ultimate dream was to become a poet, which is not a real job unless you have a special skill within that profession. He gave up a good education to fulfill his dream and it backfired. Jed lives alone and has no job or wife. The main character remained calm and did the right thing. Now she has exactly what Jed does not: a husband, children and a home. Jed felt poetic justice the hard way.

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Poetic Justice

...Poetic Justice “Poetic Justice” is a short story written by Diana Appleyard, the short story was published in 2004. The short story is about a woman, who was invited to her class reunion, she starts to think of her old boyfriend Jed Cunningham, the thought of him made her think back at the time that they had together. “His name burnt its way into her soul.” (p.1. l.5) Jed Cunningham was the coolest person in school, everybody looked up to him, and he even made his own style. “The coolest of the cool with the fashions everyone else followed, from scarved draped casually round his neck to the tie at half-mast, school trousers worn low on his hips.”(p.1 ll. 23-25) Jed Cunningham was that type of person that had all types of friends, for example in the text it says: “Who resolutely refused to be in with the in crowd, and gathered about him an eclectic group of friends from the deeply weird scientists nerd to the incredibly popular and handsome head boy, a dead ringer for Pierce Brosnan.” (p.1 ll.25-27) So Jed Cunningham could pretty much do whatever he wanted to do. Even the teachers were afraid of him because he if going is own way, and nothing was going to stop him. Now Jed Cunningham is extremely clever, and he knows what he is doing. But now he is alone and lives with his dog, and that is probably not the life he had expected. The narrator is a “typical housewife” she lives in the country now with her two daughters and her husband. She has not really put any effort into......

Words: 855 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Poetic Justice

...Assignment: Write an essay (700-1000 words) in which you analyse and interpret the short story Poetic Justice. Your essay must include the following points: • A characterization of Jed Cunningham • The narrator’s image of herself • The significance of their youthful relationship • Comment on the language and the point of view • The theme(s) • The title Text: Poetic Justice, a short story by Diana Appleyard, published in Days of Wine and Roses, Black Swan, London 2004. Poetic Justice Emil Lindgaard Nielsen The short story pivots around a mature woman whom recently discovered a social network for her old school, in which people tend to post descriptions of their current lifestyles. This makes her reminisce of old days and in particular her old boyfriend, Jed Cunningham. Jed was a rather odd fellow, who didn’t have intensions to stand out but somehow never seemed like everybody else. He was tall, with thick black hair, blue eyes, pale skin, broad shoulders and a mouth with a constant sardonic smile. He was smart, cynic and seemed ready to or already had entered adulthood. The curse of him not being capable of doing expected things caused him into living on a remote island by himself. The narrators saw him as a bit of a hipster, embracing the lifestyle of carpe diem, way before everybody else. Her perception of herself is at first rather negative. When she first thinks back on her youth, she isn’t pleased with her current body. Her stomach extends over her......

Words: 520 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

Poetic Justice

...Poetic Justice More and more people want the easy life, a life with no problems and no limitations. People strive to be the next breakthrough, the next star. But is it worth the risk; is it worth gambling your life on? In the short story “Poetic Justice”, written by Diana Appleyard, Jed Cunningham takes the jump, leaving all opportunities of graduation behind, to be a free man, to be a poet. Jed Cunningham is a freedom fighter a man who does not want to be one of the regular guys, he wants to be free of expectations and live the life no one thought he would live. Jed was not a part of the flock, the herd, he separated himself from the rest. Jed was way ahead of his own age, he didn’t follow the trends, but rather made them, and he spoke wisely and read books of philosophic authors. His didn’t want reality, but fantasy, a life with no worries. Jed was a boy sure of his future he didn’t want to hang around and get a career and a stable normal life, what he wanted was freedom, just like most other poets he was a rebellion to the norm, to society. Jed was sure of his future and knew what he wanted to, he was so determined that he without a thought left his girlfriend, when she did not share the his beliefs. In the end he lost what was important to him no way of getting it back. The protagonist on the on the other hand only felt this freedom while she was together with Jed, now she is in the never-ending daily life. So basically her self-esteem has three phases, the first......

Words: 846 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

Poetic Justice

...The story are wrote by Diana Appleyard The story ” Poetic Justice” is a story about a mother whose selfesteem is at its lowest and she has no confidence in her self. The mother is sitting at her computer looking at her chat side, when she sees the name of her old boyfriend Jed Cunningham. Jed was the cool kid who didn’t care about school and rouls, he was going to be a poet and move to Ireland. Jed didn’t realize that the fact that he didn’t care about anything would be the reason why he later in his life would live a gray and sad life with no wife and just a dog. The mother thinks of her self as a gray and doll person who doesn’t has a good life. That image of her self comes because she cant move on from the feeling of being in love with the cool boy and have the attention from others. After she starts to chat with Jad, she realizes that she actually has a normal and good life, compered to Jed who haven’t maked anything out of him self, and have droved his wife on the edge of insanity and now he is trying to find purpose with his life by going back to something he could care about years ago. Jed is trying to act cool behind the computer, but is really sad and miserable. When the mother sees that, she realizes that if she goes back to him she just ends up with a life there actually is gray and doll. After that she know that she has a good and descent life, compered to him. And that lifts her up from the darkness she is living in. The theme or themes in this essay...

Words: 472 - Pages: 2

Free Essay

Poetic Justice

...Poetic Justice is written by Diana Appleyard, and it is a short story, and was published in Days of Wine and Roses, Black Swan, London 2004. The story is about a woman who finds her ex-boyfriend, Jed Cunningham on the Friends Unite website. Then she tells us ''in her mind'' about their relationship in high school, how much she loved him, about Jed himself and about their break-up. She tells us how her life is boring, that her ''energy is gone'' after the break up, and how she had been depressed. When they broked up, he told her that he would never speak or contact her again, but suddenly he sends her an email after she finds him on the Friends Unite. Then they start to write to each other, asking how their lives are and etc. until Jed tells her that he ''drove his wife insane'' because she wasn't her - the narrator. She is shocked after she reads it. She always thought her life was boring, and all her energy and wildness was gone, that she is reserved. But she is shocked because she had always thought, that Jed's life was perfect, that he was over it and moved on a long time ago. She doesn't reply, but deletes the mail and it was gone into ''infinite cyberspace''. The story only evolves around two characters: the female narrator and Jed Cunningham. They are at the same age and British. She is living somewhere in the UK in a suburban neighbourhood with her husband, two children and her dog Bramble. She writes articles for a newspaper or magazine and picks her daughter......

Words: 844 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

Poetic Justice

...Essay on Diana Appleyard, “Poetic justice” 2004 Do you know the feeling of being stock in the past? You just can’t let go of the strong emotions and the dream you were in at the time. All these feelings are made by one person, who you thought was the one. It is like you lived alone whit the one and wake up alone. In the loneliness the only thing that existed were you and he/she, and nothing else. Until the day, where the bubble broke. And the one left you behind. Maybe he/she wanted something else, maybe her/she had other dreams and thoughts for the future. Then you’re are forgotten thorn apart, you feel lonely, your crying, and you are now outcast from the society. Jed is the childhood boyfriend of the narrator. He was a different boy when they were young. We only hear about him through the main character. He was the popular guy, even though he didn’t try to be. He was himself and he seemed very self-confident. The narrator tells, how he smoked he didn’t try to hide his cigarette like the other boys who were frightened. Sometimes, it was the other way around that the teachers, were afraid of him, because he was so grown up. He had his life planed in his head. He wanted to be a writer a poet. We don’t know if he became a poet, but he moved to live in Ireland as he wished, that also was the thing that torn him away from the narrator. In the present he lives alone at the ocean with his dog you get the feeling that he is lonely. The narrator is a 40-50 year old woman......

Words: 720 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Poetic Justice

...Poetic Justice Many of us would not let go of who we are. We do not like the fact that we are getting older, this scares a lot of us to death. Suddenly we have to be grownups and act like one. Another thing we experienced when we were younger was our first love. It would, for many people, be awkward t meet their old boy- or girlfriend again. Time really changes us and we do not always want to do the same thing as others. The short story, Poetic Justice, written by Diana Appleyard, is about a woman who gets a flashback to when she was younger. She is sitting at the computer and sees a familiar name, Jed Cunningham, which is her old boyfriend. Jed is described as an ‘Irish poet’ and a man who is living his dreams to the fullest. He had his own idea on how the world was spinning. When the narrator thinks of him, she remembers him as he used to be back in the days. In Jed’s younger days, he was described as a guy who was not afraid to stand out. Jed was a role model, and an inspiration to the other students, “I mean, he was Jed, Jed who always stood outside the herd, the coolest of the cool with the fashion everyone else followed,” (P. 1. l. 22-24). He had dreams about becoming a poet and travel. The narrator admired Jed and his dreams, but when he left her, she got hurt, “How did it end? She remembered tears, and anger, something being thrown. And him driving off saying she would never see or speak to him again.”(P. 2 l. 58-59). When Jed contacts the narrator, many years......

Words: 716 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

Poetic Justice

...Jed Cunningham: Here you’ll find a characterization of Jed Cunningham, who is one of the main characters in this short story. Jed Cunningham is in his High School years defined as a tall blue eyed, broad shouldered, skinny guy, whose skin is pale. Jed’s hair is defined as thick black with a tuft at front and a mouth that curves into a sardonic smile. Later In life he describes himself as an old sad and grey haired man. Jed’s personality is quite complicated, and it appears as if he is just waiting for a chance to break free and do the unexpected and he actually promises himself that he won’t ever do anything that is expected of him. Jed’s mantra: “Live for the day” very well describes, how important it is for him to live in the presence and how much he hates to look back. Jed is very good in school and is more clever than other teenagers at his age, however he isn’t really interested in school or in the subjects. The cleverness is expressed in: “ He was an old head on young shoulders, who stood apart and watched the world mocking". More over he’s a person, who is really popular and liked by the majority of the people in High School, but never the less it doesn’t seem like he has any interest in a social life with the other students – and this is well expressed in the statement : "Even when he had been at school he had never seemed a part of it " His dream is to go and live in Ireland, live in a tiny cottage and write and drink and just live in a place, where......

Words: 554 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Poetry

...1 - Character must be of noble/high stature  2 - Hubris (tragic flaw) - pride blinds them  3 - Downfall  4 - Enlightenment (near the end of the play)  5 - Their death Someone of high position; in this time period, that meant royalty. He is 'universal,' meaning that everyone everywhere can relate to the kinds of problems or sufferings or emotions that the hero experiences. He has a 'tragic flaw' - this could be a personality trait (like greed, lust, ambition, jealousy, etc.), OR an error in judgement (a bad decision). This 'tragic flaw' leads to his downfall - usually ruins his career, reputation, power, etc. He is enlightened at the end of the story, meaning he realizes where he went wrong, he is humble, and he accepts the consequences . A tragic hero is a character in a work of fiction (often the protagonist) who commits an action or makes a mistake which eventually leads to his or her defeat. The idea of the tragic hero was created in ancient Greek tragedy and defined by Aristotle (and others). Usually, this includes the realization of the error (anagnorisis), which results in catharsis or epiphany. Aristotelian tragic hero Characteristics Aristotle once said that "A man doesn't become a hero until he can see the root of his own downfall." An Aristotelian tragic hero must have four characteristics: Nobility (of a noble birth) or wisdom (by virtue of birth). Hamartia (translated as flaw, mistake, or error, not an Elizabethan tragic flaw). A reversal of......

Words: 1753 - Pages: 8

Free Essay

Aristotle’s Model: the Play as a Whole

...Aristotle’s Model: The Play as a Whole In Aristotle’s Poetics, Aristotle emphasizes three major elements of a good play: plot, character, and thought. To be more specific, in an Aristotelian play, thought sets the cause of action with character as emotion developer based on plot as the basic form. Besides these three main factors, the idea that a play should be a complete whole is also the basis of the Poetics (Aristotle 61). Therefore, when comparing the choices Lobby Hero by Kenneth Lonergan and The Philadelphia Story by Philip Barry for the play of the season, unification and regularity of all three elements. After comparing and contrasting both plays, Lobby Hero fits the Aristotle’s model’s three elements, plot, character and thought better than The Philadelphia Story does because Lobby Hero has a more consistent development of action, characters’ personality and emotions. The imitation of one action is very essential to construct a complete plot. Lobby Hero constructs a smooth unity of action in all of its plots while The Philadelphia Story’s imitation is vague. Although both plays have connected actions that make the structural union of all parts, Lobby Hero has a more surrounded action which is the pursuit of right things. Jeff repeatedly shows his ambition of lending help. For example, he praises William’s kindness when William is baffled by his brother’s incident; he also emphasizes his importance as a “safety specialist” to make himself sound superior. These......

Words: 1454 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

I Don't Know

...Sophocles' Oedipus is a perfect fit to Aristotle's Ideal Tragic Hero. Oedipus follows all of the rules, with a hamartia, an anagnorisis, and a peripeteia. The audience is introduced to the hamartia, or tragic flaw, of Oedipus early in the play. Oedipus believes he can dodge the oracle given to him at Delphi that he will kill his father and marry his mother. By leaving the city of Corinth and heading to Thebes, Oedipus thinks that he can outsmart the will that the gods have for him. However, the audience knows that one cannot run away from an oracle. The oracle will come true no matter what is done. Therefore, the hamartia of Oedipus is his belief that he can evade his oracle. Oedipus' anagnorisis, recognition, later comes when he is told that it was he who killed the former King Lauis and that he is, in fact, now married to his own mother. The city of Thebes had been searching for King Lauis' murderer in order to drive him out of Thebes to save the city from the plague. With this anagnorisis Oedipus is finally led to his peripeteia, or downfall. First of all, Oedipus is put to shame in front of his entire city because of his incestuous act of marrying his mother. But, more importantly, he realizes that he had not successfully avoided the oracle. In order to try to save himself he blinds himself. If he is not able to see the truth with his own eyes, he should not be able to enjoy the gift of sight. http://personal.monm.edu/ysample/aristotle.htm Oedipus follows ten of the......

Words: 3052 - Pages: 13

Premium Essay

Antigone Essay

...The Tragic Hero in Antigone According to the dictionary, a tragic hero is a literary character who makes an error of judgment or has a fatal flaw that, combined with fate and external forces, brings on a tragedy. In the story "Antigone," by Sophocles, Antigone has all the necessary traits to be qualified as the tragic character of the story. She is an honorable and important person, she has a fearless attitude, and she ends up facing a downfall because of her deeds. Antigone is an honorable and important person in Thebes. She obviously has a very good heart because she has decided to give her brother Polynieces a proper burial even though her uncle, Creon, has forbidden anyone to and has states that if someone does then they will be put to death. Antigone tells her sister, Ismene, "Ismene, I am going to bury him" (Antigone Prologue. 31) Even though she has Creon's threat in her mind, she takes the responsibility of bringing "honor to her family" by burying Polynieces. This shows good character as she is showing love for her family. Also, she does not let Ismene take part in her "crime". This shows how considerate she is of her sister's well being. Another important trait which Antigone has is her fearless attitude and her consistency. Throughout the play, Antigone sticks to her believes. Once she has made the decision to bury Polynieces, she does it without any fear. "Creon is not strong enough to stand in my way" (Antigone......

Words: 410 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Othello Coursework Essay

...Othello Coursework Question 1: 'I took you for that cunning whore of Venice/ that married with Othello'. Looking again at Act 4 Scene 2 and Act 5 Scene 2 consider to what extent the presentation of Desdemona is that of a sufficiently convincing tragic heroine? William Shakespeare's ''Othello'' is a complex tragedy, with many conflicting desires, jealousy and memorable characters. As the audience, we are able to see the changes the characters face throughout the play. These differences can turn the entire play from romantic to a disastrous ending. The main female protagonist Desdemona lives through these changes in Shakespeare's ''Othello'', we as the audience are able to acknowledge her feelings and how she goes from a confident, brave young woman who doesn't think twice on what other's think about her and has the audacity to go against her father's wishes and marries the husband of her choice, Othello, to a broken betrayed and murdered girl. Throughout the play we are able to notice that Desdemona's character slowly breaks, her confidence begins to shatter as her husband begins to lose his trust towards her and slowly the audience is able to see their relationship disintegrate. Furthermore, the confidence she had from the beginning of the play is gone and replaced by the feelings of betrayal and lose of trust. Throughout the play she has been targeted by jealousy and tragic forces. I think Desdemona in some sense is a tragic heroine, looking at Shakespeare’s and......

Words: 1023 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

West Side Story Essay

...The popular 1961 film, West Side Story, follows the adventure and triumph in New York City, of two star-crossed lovers, born into opposing dichotomies. Although the movie may seem like nothing more than a musical about two feuding gangs in the 1950s, this story dates back to the sixteenth century, during the Dark Ages. It is perhaps even more ancient, developed by Ancient Greeks. The exact tale did not originate that far into the past, but its basic plot of a literary tragedy was invented long ago, and was adopted to modern times. West Side Story qualifies as a literary tragedy because the established tragic hero impacts the rise, climax, fall, and ultimate inescapable disaster of the story. The plot structure of a literary tragedy follows a very specific and necessary path throughout the story. The tale begins with hatred, fighting, and conflict, at nobody’s ideal. The plot requires a reason to escalate or rise, which is the Tony, the tragic hero, and his desire to reach his ideal of love. Other characters’ ideals are also attempted to be achieved. The individual members of the Jets and Sharks strive to gain superiority and territory from each other. The gangs start the path to their ideals by arranging a fight to decide who the victorious and superior gang will be. Tony rises towards his ideal when he meets Maria, and makes a proud and willful decision to pursue a relationship, despite forces acting against them. Uncontrollable forces act upon our hero, such as his......

Words: 850 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Everyman

...Tragedy. Ed. P. E. Easterling. Cambridge University Press, 1997. Cambridge Collections Online. Cambridge University Press. 23 February 2012 DOI:10.1017/CCOL0521412455.005 Alexander, Nigel. "Critical Disagreement about Oedipus and Hamlet." Shakespeare Survey Volume 20: Shakespearean and Other Tragedy. Ed. Kenneth Muir. Cambridge University Press, 1967. Cambridge Collections Online. Cambridge University Press. 23 February 2012 DOI:10.1017/CCOL0521069009.004 Buxton, Richard. "Tragedy and Greek Myth." The Cambridge Companion to Greek Mythology. Ed. Roger D. Woodard. Cambridge University Press, 2008. Cambridge Collections Online. Cambridge University Press. 23 February 2012 DOI:10.1017/CCOL9780521845205.005 Wiles, David. "Aristotle’s Poetics and ancient dramatic theory." The Cambridge Companion to Greek and Roman Theatre. Eds. Marianne McDonald and J. Michael Walton. Cambridge University Press, 2007. Cambridge Collections Online. Cambridge University Press. 23 February 2012 DOI:10.1017/CCOL9780521834568.006 Martin, Richard P. "Ancient theatre and performance culture." The Cambridge Companion to Greek and Roman...

Words: 311 - Pages: 2