The Pathfinder Of The Seas

1632 WordsNov 4, 20157 Pages
When people go on cruise trips, they intend to enjoy their time off to experience the sights and sounds of the open sea. In Annie Dillard’s Mornings Like This, she includes in her collection of found poems a poem that instills a similar sense of imagery that one would experience by the ocean. Her found poem, called “The Pathfinder of the Seas,” includes a variety of words and sentences that relate to sailing in the sea. She extracted them from other literature related to scientific research of the sky and the sea. The author brings together these distinct elements and structures them in a poem. By giving them a new home, she subsequently gives the work a new meaning. Dillard aims for the reader to find a new perspective on life through the…show more content…
It does this by pointing out that a limit on the expansion of thought, whether mentally or spiritually, does not exist. The style of syntax she uses when constructing the found poem supports the efficacy to getting her message through to the reader. The structure of her poem leads the reader towards her goal of understanding the process of expanding their mind. The main body of the poem, excluding the first and last stanza, can be dissected into three consecutive distinct parts: commands, observations, and questions the author provides. The poem first introduces observations and follows with the metaphysical question: “And why have not / The currents of the sea worn away its bottom?” (Dillard 7). This first stanza serves as a signpost to how Dillard structured the rest of the poem, and it gives the reader a vignette of what will come after. After that stanza, Dillard provides four commands concerning interacting the sky and the sea. This begins the path she sets out for the reader. After presenting the commands, Dillard moves on to provide descriptions about the skies and seas, including observations such as the “Aurora Borealis” and “the height and velocity of waves.” She finally concludes the path she set for the reader with yet another metaphysical question: “If the water which now lies on the floor / Of the deep sea has to lie there forever, / Why was it made fluid instead of solid?” The final stanza of the poem serves as a reminder of the path the
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