“Man’s sentimental attachment to object is one of life’s greatest consolations.” by Orhan Pamuk explains how objects with emotional meanings can often provide comfort to an individual during difficult times. This ties in with the poem The Mercy by Philip Levine in multiple ways, in which the most significant one would be how an orange became such a symbolic item to the author’s mother through a series of events. There’s always some things that we would never give away, and perhaps the worth would only increase with time. An ordinary object can have influential and precious meanings that worth much over its monetary value depending on the individual and the memories generated from this tangible possession.
The Mercy has shown a lot of morals and insights towards life that I deeply agree in accordance with Philip Levine. Starting with the poem’s title “The Mercy”, it has given me wonders about what mercy as a noun could possibly mean. Thankfulness? Benevolence? However, when the “orange” was introduced, my doubts were answered immediately due to the fact that “...a young Scot… taught her the word… patiently over and over again”. Being patient enough to teach someone such an easy word demonstrates kindness in both accepting foreigners who hasn’t encountered such things and showing lenience. The orange embodies the Scot’s mercy and metaphorically, a symbol of comfort during the girl’s uneasy trip to the US. But it only had its meanings beyond just a citrus fruit from the fact that she chose to accept it and taste the sweet juice. Or the compassion of human nature. During her “long autumn voyage” she has experienced tragic events including a smallpox outbreak, but how she managed to survive could have been almost impossible without the psychological support that she has received from the young Scot earlier, through a physical orange. Her unforgettable experience on “The Mercy” impacted her maturity and would continue to influence her worldviews. Through this bittersweet journey, she was taught with having hope and enjoying and cherishing the little things. Like an orange.
The amount of times that I’ve had arguments with my mom for throwing away my stuff while cleaning