A Mother’s Wisdom: Empowering Her Child To Persevere

783 words - 4 pages

One of Langston Hughes earliest poems, “Mother to Son” is a piece of empowerment in the form of a conversation between a mother and her child. Her own upbringing and traumatic experiences, allows her to instill words of wisdom into her son as he begins his journey. “Mother to Son” successfully acknowledges unequal opportunity in America as well as the struggles one may face in attempting to live the American Dream. Langston Hughes uses diction, metaphor, and imagery in order to convey the story of a woman for whom opportunity was tight, yet still persevered.
In “Mother to Son”, Hughes reveals through his diction that perseverance is key in ones life despite the cards you may be dealt with. ...view middle of the document...

The mother goes on to say, “It’s had tacks in it / And splinters / And Boards torn up…But all the time / I’se been-a-climbin’ on…”(4-7) Hughes develops the metaphor of the staircase to convey the reader of how although she has come across many reasons to give up, she continued pushing forward.
As the poem progresses, the mother tells her son, “Don’t you set down on the steps / ‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard / “ (15-16). Metaphorically speaking the steps are symbolic for giving up. The mother successfully points out to her son that inevitably things will be rough sometimes, but he shall never fall off the edge of life for everything in life is momentarily. When she writes, “It’s had tacks in it / And splinters, / And boards torn up, (4-6) she is emphasizing that in her journey she has endure many things that have caused her pain. Boards torn up definitely will not be found in a p
This famous monologue successfully conveys an idea of hope through the use of imagery. As the mother attempts to convince her son that he should always remain optimistic, she recounts in her journey as, “sometimes goin’ in the dark / Where there ain’t been no light”(). Dark, as often associated with evil, is...

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