Living Like Weasles

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“That is, I don’t think I can learn from a wild animal how to live in particular—shall I suck warm blood, hold my tail high, walk with my footprints precisely over the prints of my hands?—but I might learn something of mindlessness, something of the purity of living in the physical senses and the dignity of living without bias or motive.”

In “Living Like Weasels”, the author Annie Dillard, encounters a weasel. Typically, in the animal kingdom a weasel is viewed as an unremarkable, and even disgusting animal. However, with the appearance of a weasel, Annie encounters a sort of revelation, or epiphany, about life and how it should be lived. In a particularly poignant quotation in paragraph 14, Annie says, “That is, I don’t think I can
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She missed her chance of grasping the weasel, her chance in living like the weasel, to live in simplicity and necessity. “I missed my chance; I should have gone for the throat.” She has a powerful urge in transforming her life. The weasel’s mode of existence evokes the instinct in preservation of her own human manner of being. Annie also shows her entrapment; whether she has the ability to live with “mindlessness” like the weasel or not. Ultimately she means that we should grasp the necessities of life and never let it go. She continues with juxtapositions between man and nature and how man is capable of “living under the wild rose as wild weasels” and how we can all go “wild” referring animals. “Down is a good place to go where the mind is single,” this refers to a simple or single mind is the best place to be. “Down is out” means to come out of your current mindset and go to your “careless senses,” like the weasel’s. Then Annie goes on and asks a rhetorical question; “could two live that way?” meaning if we as humans can actually live “unchallenged” and like the weasel.

Rhetorical Devices: Alliteration and Repetition: “held on, held on”-emphasizing that she should of held on to the weasel. “We could live under the wild rose wild as weasels.”
Parallelism: “I could live two days…..sniffing bird bones, blinking,

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