His Stillness Essay

1399 words - 6 pages

The poem “His Stillness” by Sharon Olds is about Olds’ encounter with an abusive who was dying from cancer. Olds’ grew up in an abusive family home; her dad was always known as an alcoholic. Olds’ dad being an alcoholic created a hard living environments for her; therefore she wished that her parents never got married. Whenever liquor was in her dad’s system, he was unemotional making life for Olds hard. She never describes the things that he did to her physically. The visit to the doctor’s office made her open up to her dad. She saw her dad as lovely and caring family man and she never imagines him being the man who he was at the doctor’s office. She felt tremendously sad for him and ...view middle of the document...

Her dad was known as an abusive man who hurt her feelings because of alcohol but she learned how to appreciate the man that he is when he is not drunk. The mistakes that her dad made were not intentional. Even though her dad was an alcoholic; he presents a lesson in her life. She did not understand the lesson her dad was trying to teach until years later, but there is a lesson. However, she did not have control on long her dad can stay in her life. She knew her dad had a short time to live. She writes “There are things we can do which might give you time but we cannot cure you.” She wants her dad to stay alive when she found out the real him because she now knows that he is not really abusive; instead he is a kind and caring man. Despite the fact that her father was abusive, she kept him close and he had the greatest impact on her direction in life, her emotions, feelings, her commitment, and her dedication to become a better person to her children. This poem is about forgiving the ones we love, those who did us wrong and we cannot hold grudges forever. She accepts her father and there was a new beginning in her life. A new chapter was starting to form. “At the end of his life his life began to wake in me” (Olds 440). She came to an understanding that her dad is not who he had always been to her as an abusive man but he is a caring man who cherishes his family.

Sharon Olds childhood was described as a “hellfire.” Growing up, she was told that she was going to hell. In Olds’ poem, she tries to express how she felt about her early childhood with an abusive father and relationships with her family. Olds wrote many poems about her relationship with her helpless, alcoholic father and she describes her path to help deal with these memories from forgiving her father to loving the dying man. Most of Olds poems are about her journey from an abusive household to healing her past memories from a man she is disgusted with. Her poems are ways of her speaking in loud tone describing domestic violence, sexuality, and family relationships. Like any poem, “His Stillness” the theme of the poem was about Olds getting close to her father who was dying from cancer and truly understanding her dad. She wrote about meeting with a man she had considered a monster and had tremendous hatred for. Her passion to write poems comes from her early childhood with her family; however, her relationship with her father was not what she wanted. She grew up in an alcoholic household but she never told us how her father treated her. She tends to keep her private life from the world.
The fact that a woman had always hate her father and wished...

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