Analysis Of Randall Jarrell's The Death Of The Ball Turret Gunner

1315 words - 5 pages

Analysis of Randall Jarrell's The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner

Many of the great poems we read today were written in times of great distress. One of these writers was Randall Jarrell. After being born on May 6, 1914, in Nashville Tennessee, Jarrell and his parents moved to Los Angeles where his dad worked as a photographer. When Mr. and Mrs. Jarrell divorced, Randall and his younger brother returned to Nashville to live with their mother. While in Nashville, Randall attended Hume-Frogg high school. Randall showed his love for the arts while in high school by participating in dramatics and journalism. Jarrell continued his career in the arts when he wrote and edited for Vanderbilt’s humor magazine, The Vanderbilt Masquerader. After earning his graduate degree at Vanderbilt, Jarrell accepted a teaching job at the University of Texas. While teaching at Texas, Jarrell met his future wife, Mackie Langham, a fellow English teacher. In 1942, Jarrell left home to join the Army Air Corps as a flying cadet. At about this same time, Randall’s first book of poetry was being published. When Jarrell wrote home, his family often said his letters were, “confined and dreary.” When Jarrell could not quite cut it as a cadet, he switched to being a navigation control tower operator. As a control tower operator, Randall began to write about the pilots, navigators and gunners of the war. This is probably when Jarrell wrote one of his most famous poems, “The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner.” After being discharged from the army, Randall went back to teaching. Randall’s love for teaching showed by his famous quote, “if I were a rich man, I would pay money to teach.” Randall did have some psychiatric problems though. Many people thought Jarrell committed suicide when he was hit by a car on a dark road in 1965. People assumed suicide because at the time of his death Randall was in treatment for slitting his wrists in an attempt to kill himself. Most of Randall’s poetry reflects what he saw and experienced during the war.
The structure that Jarrell uses in his poem, “The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner,” is quite unique. This poem consists of five uneven verses. All of these verses are combined into one stanza. The metric pattern in this poem is very hard to detect. All of the lines begin with at least two anapestic feet followed by at least one iambic foot. This poem is not long enough to have a rhyme scheme even though the second and the fifth line have end rhyme. It is absolutely amazing how Jarrell gives us so many images in only a few short verses.
Jarrell uses a great deal of imagery in this poem to help the reader get a better picture of what is going on. In the first line of the poem Jarrell uses visual, auditory and tactile imagery. When he uses the words, “mother’s sleep,” the reader can see the mother laying in her bed sound asleep. Also the reader can hear the deep breaths that the mother is taking while she slumbers. The reader gets the...

Find Another Essay On Analysis of Randall Jarrell's The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner

The Physics of a Golf Ball

1946 words - 8 pages The Physics of a Golf Ball The first written reference of golf was in 1457. Golf balls have had extraordinary changes since that time; they've gone from leather pouches to dried gum to today's dimpled balls. These dimples help decrease the drag and increase the lift. Different forces are applied to the golf ball when struck by the club. Golf clubs have grooves to create backspin. And then there are different variables that affect how a

The Life and Times of Lucille Ball

1848 words - 7 pages The Life and Times of Lucille Ball "Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world." That quote was one that Lucille Ball lived by throughout her twisted and turbulent life. As one of the most recognized faces in the world, she is known to millions simply as Lucy. She went from waitress and salesgirl to model to Goldwyn Girl to radio clown to an unlikely leading

The Soccer Ball: Effect of Air Pressure on the Movement of the Soccer Ball

910 words - 4 pages Can you bend it like Beckham? With the right training, skill, and knowing more about the soccer ball, the individual will! The soccer ball is a very interesting object. A soccer ball has to have a certain amount of air pressure in order to work properly. The air also affects the soccer ball’s flight. The soccer ball is also made of different kinds of material and has different sizes. In the next couple of paragraphs I will tell you more about a

Tennis Science: The Power of the Racket and the Ball

1332 words - 5 pages Tennis Science: The Power of the Racket and the Ball Introduction Tennis is a popular sport mostly in western part of the world. This is played as single or double players. Each players has a racket that should be used in smashing the ball in to the other side of the court and take advantage in getting a score. This sport can enhance our physical fitness same as some hard core athletic sports like swimming, basketball, and many more

In the Heat of the Night by John Ball

566 words - 2 pages Sam Woods is a very important character in the novel In the Heat of the Night. He is a racist, and throughout the novel you will notice many changes in his attitude towards Negros.      Sam Woods is a middle-aged man, who works for the city of Well's police department. Until Chief Gillespie had arrived in town, Sam Wood had been rated as a big man, but Bill Gillespie's towering size, made Sam look a normal size. Sam takes a lot of pride

Analysis of Death and Loss in Death of the Moth

1712 words - 7 pages Virginia Woolf’s essay “Death of the Moth” describes her encounter with a moth as it fights furiously to escape her windowpane before it is claimed by death. The speaker’s first instinct as they intently watch the moth’s struggle is to help it, but as she goes to do so, they realize that the moth is engaged in the same inescapable struggle faced by all living creatures as they try to prevent death from robbing them of life. By witnessing

Psychological Analysis of Death: The Death of Ivan Illych

1045 words - 4 pages The Death of Ivan Illych brings an excellent in-depth description of Elisabeth Kubler-Ross’s 5 cycles of grief theory. In the book, it shows how Ivan Illych goes through these cycles in their own individual way. The cycles that Kubler-Ross uses in her theory are: denial, anger, depression, bargaining, and acceptance. To get a better understanding of these cycles, this paper will describe each cycle and provide quotations that will help develop

Origins of Ball Games

1129 words - 5 pages Origins of Ball Games Ball games can be traced back to Egyptian times, carvings have been found in temples since 1500 BC and the games were linked with religious ceremonies. Christianity actually developed the game of tennis through French monks in the 11th or 12th centuries. The earliest version of the game was called 'La Soule' where the

An Analysis of Vance v. Ball State University

1353 words - 5 pages progressively responsible tasks within an organization. Many business managers may choose to delegate tasks to those employees, thereby graying the structured lines of responsibility. As those lines diminish, organizations become vulnerable to violation of employee civil rights. In review of the Supreme Court case of Vance v. Ball State (2013), we examine Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and whether employers may be vicariously liable for

Little Ball of Fur

1041 words - 5 pages awaiting death from the onset of the story. He tells us the story of how he went from being a gentlemen and a loving husband to a murderer. First, he tells us about his cat, Pluto, and how he gauged one of its eyes out in an alcohol fueled rage He eventually kills his cat simply because it had loved him. In a weird twist, the narrator finds another cat that looks very much like Pluto. At first he was smitten with the cat, but slowly began to

Ballad of Birmingham by Dudley Randall

815 words - 3 pages The faded voices of choir singers are muffled by a roaring explosion. The sounds from the crumbling building spread down the block. Worn-down bricks, knocked out from underneath each another. Shards of colored glass, shot into the air. Chucks of wood and rubbish litter the sidewalk. Thick smoke and fearful screams saturate the air. A mother’s worse nightmare. In the poem “Ballad of Birmingham” by Dudley Randall, a mother attempted to protect

Similar Essays

Analysis Of Randall Jarrell's "The Death Of The Ball Turret Gunner" And Wilfred Owen's "Dulce Et Decorum Est"

1018 words - 4 pages In today's society, war is often perceived as glorious and mighty. Many movies leave out scenes of young soldiers throwing their lives away and thousands of people dying systematically in unheroic deaths. The poems, "The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner" and "Dulce et Decorum est" attempt to touch on the issues of war. In these poems, the narrators uses imagery, diction and sorrow to show the brutality and sorrow of war."The Death of the Ball

"Death Of A Ball Turret Gunner" Explained.

531 words - 2 pages "The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner," by Randall Jarrell is a poem that speaks of both the roughness of war and sometimes the all too real worthlessness of life. A ball turret gunner is one of the most dangerous jobs of any airborne crew member. Upon squeezing into this Plexiglas dome, the gunner has little or no room to maneuver. Most of the men choose the fetal position to compensate for the cramped area and extreme weather they have to

Analysis Of The Drag Ball Culture In New York City

1090 words - 4 pages chronicles the lives of African American gay, and transgender within the drag ball culture in New York City in the mid – to – late eighties; a culture where they can create their own real identity and be themselves or anyone they want to be; a culture that is a part of our civilization and yet completely boycotted from it. The film gives this queer community a voice that has hardly ever been heard by the dominant audiences. Livingston provides us

The Poen "Ballad Of Birmingham" By Dudley Randall

1030 words - 4 pages In the poem Ballad of Birmingham, by Dudley Randall, writtenin 1969, Mr. Randall uses of irony to describes the events of the mothers decision,and also her concern for the welfare of her darling little child. It seems odd that thischild would even know what a freedom march is, but this would be considerednormal back in the early 1960's, when Mr. Martin Luther King Jr. had rallies andfreedom marches to free the African American people from