Today the students in my 11th grade English Class had to choose their favourite quote in the play “The Glass Menagerie” and respond. Here is the example I provided for them. Please feel free to read their responses in the comments section of this post!
“He is the long-delayed but always expected something that we live for.”
Tennessee Williams “The Glass Menagerie”
The above quote refers to the character “Jim” in The Glass Menagerie. A man who at one time was the quintessential high school hero, the one “most likely to succeed.” But Jim hasn’t amounted to a whole lot. He hasn’t achieved any fame or fortune. He is a mere cog in the wheel of everyday, middle class, 9-5 existence.
But Jim is holding out for his time to come.
He is making plans. He is taking courses. He is getting married. He is not just going to sit,
waiting for that “something” to fall out of the sky and land on his lap. He’s going out to find it.
The character Laura, on the other hand, has had her “something” fall on her lap. It’s Jim. Her high school crush taking space in her ethereal, fragile glass world. Her long-delayed but never expected something has arrived. But it’s not a perfect arrival. It’s one filled with heartache and disappointment.
It is broken glass.
What is your “long-delayed but always expected” something? Is it entrance to the perfect university program? Is it your ideal job? Is it finding a soul mate? Winning the medal?
How long have you been waiting?
How long are you willing to wait for it,
whatever “it” may be?
What are willing to do to increase your chances of getting it?
has it already arrived and you’re not all that pleased with how it’s turned out. Has it been one big disappointing, bubble bursting experience. Do you find yourself searching and waiting for another “something”?
And what do you do while you wait? Sit on your bum and twiddle your thumbs? Stick your head out the window every five minutes to see if you can spy it coming down the street? Or maybe you go out and about and search
but to no avail.
I guess the thing to do is to, as they say, is to expect it when you least expect it. Live each day appreciating what DOES exist.
The tangibles and touchables.
Filling each and every moment so there are no gaping crevasses of expectation.
So that when that “long delayed always expected something” is nothing
but a pleasant surprise
17 thoughts on “The Long Delayed But Always Expected…”
“You live in a dream; you manufacture illusions.” Pg.95
It’s like being in cased in your own little coffin. You are going crazy suffocated by your surroundings, walls, pressure, lack of air, it all gets to you. You are becoming increasingly insane by things not going the way you want. The turmoil, the fragile pieces around us, family, and friends they are all pushing down on our chests. Our dreams are what let us escape. Dreams are said to be our subconscious working out our problems. We all need to dream it gives us hope, it helps set up goals. I feel that’s what gives us that meaning of life.
Literature are the dreams in life, the symbols are the illusions masking reality. The English geeks in life, or the people who like to take a concept and run with it are the people who dream big. They take the simple things in life and elaborate creating this illusion that feels like reality. They make these simple things important, and exciting. It creates this feeling of the harsh society that surrounds us.
Dreaming takes our pain away from bills, families pushing us to do the things they want us to do. When we can’t subconsciously create our own world to get away from it all; we’d drown in the tears of our emotions and the objects of our material possessions. Realists, optimist’s, and pessimists, they all have visions. Illusions of how they want to view the world. We all dream we all manufacture some sort of reality that is our own. We all conjure aspects that make us feel something else that isn’t associated with walls surrounding us. Dreams are we are.
“man is by instinct a lover, a hunter, a fighter and none of those instincts are given much play at a warehouse” pg 34
Tom says this quote well he is battling with Amanda, who is not just his mother but also his ball and chain. Tom is one of those arty folk who rather move to France, wear striped shirts with red scarves as he writes poetry ,than spend another miserable shift in the warehouse.
This may be his ambitions but all Amanda see’s is how this does not pay the bills. she is totally fine with having a miserable son, as long as she has a home, no matter how much they fight , Amanda will never understand how Tom could POSSIBLY follow his dreams instead of helping his family.
If Amanda had been a bit nicer to Tom and tried to empathize with his dreaded work days, than perhaps Tom would have had a tougher choice his instincts for adventure. Amanda’s constant nagging pushed Tom out the door.
Choosing our passions over our family is probably one of the most difficult choices to make, because someone will end up miserable. either our abandoned family, or us slowly counting the days til we die.
Our dreams are our instinct, so even if we are pinned down or in a coffin that’s nailed, we will follow our instinct and fight our way out to follow our hearts.
“Now it’s just like all the other horses.”
The horn of a unicorn is what sets him apart from the all the other horses- his uniqueness is something so fragile and “extinct in our modern world”. The unicorn will spend his whole life dreaming of escaping his lonesomeness through the removal of his horn, entering into the deceivingly welcoming arms of normality.
“Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal.” So what truly is ‘normal’? Those around us place huge influence on the way we view the word. We spend our entire lives chasing this unrealistic definition of what is acceptable, instead of creating our own. The horn of a unicorn is what sets it apart from all of the other horses, so why remove what gives it such beauty? Would you risk abandoning all that you know and believe, simply to experience what it feels like to be ordinary? Or is being able to embrace your individuality something truly extraordinary?
Laura spent her entire life struggling with her identity. Being ashamed of her disabilities, she truly never felt acceptance from anyone and her isolation left her wondering what it feels like to be ‘normal’. In finally achieving feelings of normality through meeting Jim, Laura only experienced heartbreak and devastation. She stepped drastically outside her comfort zone to match her mother’s definition of normal, and with the shattering of the unicorn’s horn, her identity and hope for the future was shattered as well. So is it worth the risk of falling in an attempt to run with the herd?
I’ve grown up being constantly reminded of what it is to be ‘normal’. We wear shoes and our feet and hats on our head- never the other way around. But normality plays a much more complex role when defining who we are. Being ordinary provokes fear in those who dream of being different, defining who ‘fits in’ and who is left an outcast. But in striving to fit in, we encage the only thing that is truly our own- our identity. The width of our hips, the height of our reach, the color of our skin, the length of our hair, the style of our clothes- an endless list of insecurities. We spend infinite amounts of time and money to alter ourselves in order to fit our piece in to the puzzle that society has created for us. Ashamed to be different, we risk losing the unique qualities that make us who we are.
But maybe being different is a blessing in disguise. The world cannot move forward without imagination. The dreamers and the visionaries- those who are not afraid to embrace their “horns”- are the ones that inspire us to challenge the ordinary and break the boundaries placed by society. With normality comes entrapment and a lack of excitement. How could we keep up a conversation if people didn’t have different interests to share with one another? How could we write the books of history without the different stories and traditions that shape who we are? You cannot create a puzzle with only one piece. It takes many different pieces of all shapes and sizes in order to complete such a beautiful mosaic.
A unicorn is so rare and so beautiful- why would it spend its whole life trying to break off the very thing that separates it from the ordinary?
Perhaps being just like all the other horses isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
“I am disappointed but I am not discouraged”
No matter how many things go wrong in your life, you should never get discouraged, or lose hope. Jim clearly states that he is disappointed by how his life has turned out. He always thought he would be super successful and be famous; however he is quite the opposite. Jim is not famous or successful. He is however attending night school, working hard at the factory and even getting married. This shows that he is not discouraged, and he has not given up faith. Laura on the other hand has allowed herself to get discouraged. She freaks out whenever she has to leave the comfort and security of their apartment. Her attempt at night schooled failed miserably. She is slowly becoming an old maid whom is constantly self-isolating herself from the rest of society. Tom is deeply disappointed by the fact that his life has turned into him stuck working at a shoe warehouse and not following his dreams of becoming a poet. Tom however hasn’t lost hope. He escapes to the reality of his life by going to the movie every night and feeling a sense of and slowly waiting for the day that he can have his own adventures. Life has ups and down, we may get disappointed however you should never be discouraged.
“Maybe it’s a blessing in disguise”
This is a universal truth because in life, there are so many life events that happen; whether it’s a good or bad. Everything happens for a reason and there is always a blessing that is hidden.
Personally, i have lost precious loved ones and at the time it was very traumatic and my family and I didn’t know what we were going to do to overcome the difficulty. But in the process, my mom, brother and i have become closer than we ever were before.
The quote say “maybe it’s a blessing…” but I happen to think that there is always a blessing in the end. It may not feel like it right now, but behind all the pain and suffering, there is a happy ending. Life throws a lot of curveballs, but its how a person plays the game that matters.
There are so many people out there that are scary looking, maybe even homeless but on the inside, they could be the sweetest most generous person you could ever meet. A person has the choice to take the chance and make it a blessing or a curse, it just depends on how you accept it.
So after the rain, there is a beautiful rainbow with a pot of gold at the end.
“We nailed him into a coffin and he got out of the coffin without removing a single nail. There is a trick that would come in handy for me- get me out of this two by four.”
In our lives we may feel stuck or restricted because of our current situation. Sometimes the only way to truly be free is to leave those who are holding you back even if they are your loved ones. This is a difficult and uncomfortable predicament, we have to choose whether we leave those we love and be self centered or continue on with your monotonous boring life and remain with those you care for. The character Tom has to make this choice in the play The Glass Menagerie. Tom is the main provider for the family and if he leaves his mother and his dear sister Laura will with no doubt be homeless or worse. In the beginning of the play Tom continues to work at his monotonous job at the shoe factory, but he supplements his dream for adventure with the movies. As the play goes on we see how Tom grows tiresome of his life and decides to run away with the added motivation from his suffocating mother. Just like Tom we all have dream and ambitions for something better, but we are given the choice of whether or not to act on it. Tom was given the motivation to run away from his controlling mother, but he still had guilt for leaving Laura. We have to ask ourselves in our own lives if our dreams are truly worth the sadness it may bring to others.
Just like Tom his own father ran away from his wife Amanda. We see throughout the play his picture which is a constant reminder of how Mr.Wingfeild has affected Tom, Laura, and Amanda. The selfish act of Mr.Wingfeild running away from his family had multiple consequences on the family. With this tragedy Amanda clings to her children and suffocates them. With only Amanda has a parent she treats Laura as normal instead of extraordinary. Just like Tom his father was probably a dreamer and could have been that one person to give her the confidence she needed to have her own dreams. With Amanda being the only parent we see how she lives vicariously through her daughter Laura instead of leaving and following a different dream from that of the 17 gentlemen callers. Amanda found a way to still be with the ones she loved while still pursuing her dream through Laura. This action has negative effects on Laura and rather than Amanda building her up, she inturn ruins her one dream of being with Jim. In life we need to be able to decipher reality from unattainable dreams. By doing this though we limit our happiness and as a result we lose our hopes and aspirations for our lives.
We limit our potential when we only focus on reality instead of striving for what some might say is unattainable. If we listen to these voices we will blame not only ourselves for our lack of motivation but also blames those we love. So even if you do not pursue your dream you will blame the ones who held you back and hold them accountable for your tedious life. This in result causes a crack in your relationship which may not be mendable. This problem would have occurred either way, but in one of the optional realities you would have been content with the fact that you pursued your dreams. In my own life I would pursue my dreams no matter how hard it would be to leave my family behind. I would rather pursue my dreams and have a geographical distance between my loved one and me instead of an emotional gap and guilt that would be put on my family. I believe you should pursue your dreams even if it may mean leaving the ones you love. It is inevitable that you will hurt the ones you love it is just a matter of how. Would you prefer them to know you are doing something you love or have them bare the guilt; anger and frustration from you and what your life could have been? Do you want to live your life with regrets? Unlike Tom I believe there is an alternate option to staying or leaving your loved ones. You do not have to leave your family to pursue your dream. Instead I believe that our dreams should include those we love instead of having our dreams only self centered. We can still achieve our dream, but our dreams are not worth achieving if you do not have others to share them with. Our dreams reflect our inner desires whether they are selfish or not is our choice. We have to think though at the end of our lives would you rather be alone and have achieved our selfish dream or be surrounded with the ones we love. I think it is a dream in its self to have people who love you for you.
“Now it is just like all the other horses” -Laura, Pg.86, The Glass Menagerie
In The Glass Menagerie, this quote refers to the breaking of the unicorn horn, symbolic of Laura becoming “normal”.
The tiny glass unicorn, such an incredibly fragile thing, is broken when Laura dances with her old crush, Jim O’Connor. We already know how precious the unicorn is to Laura, one of the oldest pieces of glass animals she owns, and her favorite. This unicorn can be seen as symbolic of Laura herself:
LAURA: I shouldn’t be partial, but he is my favourite one.
JIM: What kind of a thing is this one supposed to be?
LAURA: Haven’t you noticed the single horn on his forehead?
JIM: A unicorn, huh?
JIM: Unicorns-aren’t they extinct in the modern world?
LAURA: I know!
JIM: Poor little fellow, he must feel sort of lonesome.
LAURA: [Smiling] Well, if he does, he doesn’t complain about it. He stays on a shelf with some horses that don’t have horns and all of them seem to get along nicely together.
JIM: How do you know?
LAURA: [lightly] I haven’t heard any arguments among them!
JIM: [grinning] No arguments, huh? Well, that’s a pretty good sign! Where shall I set him?
LAURA:Put him on the table. They all like a change of scenery once in a while!
– Unicorns are extinct in the modern world: Nobody else in the world is like Laura anymore. She is completely unique. This means she is also very lonely, but she doesn’t complain about it.
– Unicorn stays on the shelf: Laura stays home.
– Unicorn likes a change of scenery: Laura stays home and can’t usually get a changes of scenery.U
-The unicorn is different from all of the other horses: Laura is separate from “normal” society.
Upon dancing with Jim, they break the unicorn:
JIM: I hope it wasn’t the little glass horse with the horn!
LAURA: Yes [She stoops to pick it up]
JIM: Aw, aw, aw. Is it broken?
LAURA: Now it is just like all the other horses
JIM: It’s lost its-
LAURA: Horn! It doesn’t matter
-The unicorn has lost its horn, which made it unique: After being with Jim, Laura has lost what made her different, which is somewhat sad, but could be a good thing ultimately.
– Laura considers the breaking of the horn a blessing in disguise, something to make the unicorn feel better and less freakish.
I find this a rather sad moment in the book, for the unicorn has lost it’s horn-Laura has lost her uniqueness. This moment is mad even sadder when Jim tells Laura about Betty, and since now the unicorn cannot be fixed (Laura can’t be the way she was before) Laura ends up giving the unicorn to Jim, probably not wanting the reminder of losing her own “horn” because the memory would be too painful.
“I mean that as soon as Laura has got somebody to take care of her, married, a home of her own, independent-why, then you’ll be free to go wherever you please, on land, on sea, which ever way the wind blows you.” The Glass Menagerie pg.35 scene 4
Tom desperately wants to leave his home and follow in his fathers footsteps, but he doesn’t want to leave his family with nothing. He wants excitement and adventure, but he can’t have either while working at the shoe factory. Tom has a creative soul and supplements for his dull and boring life by writing poetry at work and going to the movies at night, but it isn’t enough to make him happy. He wants to travel to new places and see the world, he wants to live a life like the movies, he wants adventure and excitement but most of all he wants to escape the life in which he lives. When the opportunity arises for him to escape he takes it without thinking of how it will affect his mother and sister. But Tom is haunted by the memory of his sister and will never truly be happy.
Amanda wants Laura to have many gentleman callers like she did when she was young, but Laura is crippled by her shyness and can’t sit in a class let alone talk to a boy. Amanda is scared of what will become of her daughter when she dies. So she makes a deal with Tom that if he helps to find Laura a gentleman caller he can do what ever he wants. But with very little education and no confidence in, Laura created for herself the fragile world of glass in which she lives. But still Amanda clutches to the hope that one day her daughter will marry a good man and find true happiness escaping into reality from the glass world she created.
We all have something we want to escape from. What do you want to escape from? Maybe it’s your family, your current life, the city you live in, or maybe it’s something much smaller. It doesn’t have to be big for you to want to escape from it. How far are you willing to go in order to escape? Would you just find a way out or wait until there would be no repercussions? Do you think you’ll be any happier once you’ve escaped? Is it possible to find true happiness?
“when Laura has got someone to take care of her, then you’ll be free to go wherever you please on land,on sea,whichever the wind blows.”
In this quote Amanda is providing Tom an escape by saying if Laura found a gentlemen caller that Tom could go out and follow his own dreams.Tom is a very creative individual but is kept from his dreams because he has to support his family by working at the shoe factory. Tom despises working at the shoe factory because it is monotonous work.Tom would write poetry in the bathroom when the warehouse was not busy because he was deprived from being creative and having his own adventures since his father left and he had to take responsibility of the household.
Just like Tom many people are tied down and are forced to do what their family expects and needs of them rather then following their own dreams. That could be working at a shoe factory when they really want to travel or taking over the families farm instead of studying to become a lawyer. This can seem like a noble or heroic act to sacrifice your own desires in life for the betterment of others, but many individuals that sacrifice their dreams for others feel resentment towards the people that are tying them down. I feel I would think of those holding me back as villains in my life creating obstacles and trapping me in a life I did not want or in vision myself living, also a part of myself would feel like I was my own villain for making a choice that would encage my life in dread and boredom. Escaping and breaking free from the pressures and expectations that are holding me down would be the most heroic and noble act.Following your dreams no matter what repercussions come from it is the best life you can lead because you take control of your life and pursue what makes you happy in life.
“Glass breaks so easily. No matter how careful you are” (pg.86)
The above quote is spoken by Laura, a fragile character who lives in a world of glass. This reflects how heartbreak is inevitable to avoid. The challenges of our everyday emotions often cause us to face struggles internally. There is bound to be disappointment in life because we are too delicate. There are always going to be downs in life that can cause our hearts to shatter into millions of pieces. We are all symbolically glass and as Laura states it is impossible to avoid breaking at some point in our short but eccentric lives. It can be hard to put yourself back together afterwards but it is possible. Laura’s glass collection is symbolically a representation if how fragile we are as humans. Our emotions get the better of us and we can let ourselves be cracked by false hope. We, metaphorically as individuals, are the sculptures of glass, our own little article of colored fragility. We can use the tools we are supplied with to shape ourselves the way we want, or we can use the tools in negative ways that break ourselves and the ones who surround us.
Human emotions are hard to control and make it hard to keep our hearts protected. Often through attempts to protect ourselves we can push others we love away which can lead to sadness and depression, but sometimes we can also instil too much trust into others and through doing this we basically hand them the sledge hammer to smash us with.
It can be hard for us to decipher how much to put ourselves out there emotionally, but we learn and grow from our mistakes. The quote is portraying that it is indeed impossible to avoid heartbreak. We are faced with challenges in our lives that test us and we cannot overcome all of them without a few cracks in our frail and delicate intricate glass work.
“Glass breaks so easily. No matter how careful you are.”
This quote is spoken by Laura in the Glass Menagerie. I have chosen this quote because it really stands out to me, the quote applies to Laura because she now release how fragile she has been making herself. Even though glass is easy to break you shouldn’t be over careful with it, if something breaks the item can be replaced or fixed.
This quote can be taken in two different interpretations, first as the unicorn being Laura. When the horn breaks off it shows that Jim has showed Laura that she isn’t very different from everyone else. She just needed that extra confidence booster, this gentleman caller has told her she was very pretty and different like blue roses. Jim being all kind and sweet was getting Laura out of her comfort zone, she’s never had a gentleman caller before. Amanda Wingfield, Laura’s mother has always had gentleman callers when she was younger. Amanda was very popular and a member of the DAR, she wants Laura to be like her. Having Laura under the pressure of her mother and how she was when she was younger, plus on top of herself having pleurosis makes her more self-conscience. With the horn off the unicorn its showing that Laura can really fit in with everyone else around her, that she’s not all that different just unique.
On another note, the unicorn breaking could have been an example of Laura’s heart being broken. Jim is the only boy Laura has ever truly liked during high school, also the only gentleman caller she’s ever had. Once Jim and Laura danced and kissed her, Jim told Laura that he was engaged to be married to Betty in June, which hurt Laura. Even though in the play it doesn’t say that she is hurt about it, she would be like any other girl trying to cope with heart break. The horn fell off the unicorn it’s resembling she’s broken, but that if you glue the horn back on it can be mended.
Both of these possibilities are very life like, and could happen to anyone. All seven billion people experience heart break once in their life time. No body’s love life is completely perfect, Nicolas Sparks once said “The emotion that can break your heart is sometimes the very one that heals it…” Once someone breaks your heart there’s always someone else who can mend it with their love. Being self-conscience is normal, others can build the confidence without the help of others. But sometimes it takes the extra little boost to get out there with yourself. When a person tells you you’re pretty especially someone you like you’ll believe it, just like Laura did when Jim told her.
“Now he will feel more at home with the other horses, the ones that don’t have horns.”
Laura tells this to Jim after he breaks her unicorn. The glass unicorn is Laura’s favorite because it is not like the others; it’s different. As Laura spends time spends more time with Jim, and as he forces her to open up and forget her differences, she is becoming ‘normal’ according to her own standards. Laura is a very self-conscious person who does not believe in herself and feels she is almost worthless all the time. Amanda, her mother, does not help with her lack of confidence in any way. She is very controlling lady who thinks she can rule Laura’s life acting like she doesn’t have any injury sometimes, while others she is very cruel about it.
Sometimes people feel it is just easier and less awkward to just blend in with what everyone else is doing and follow how they are acting trying to have as little differences as possible and make as little influence as possible. People feel that if they do this they will not be judged or viewed differently from anyone else. There are two extremes to this spectrum; over self-consciousness, and self-absorption. People who are self-absorbed only think of themselves and what will benefit them making them the center of attention. On the other end, those who are self-conscious to the extreme do not want to be noticed for anything and stay out of the spot light as much as possible. There should be a midpoint between these ideas that does not favor one over the other and that is the point you should try and reach. Compassionate towards others while putting a little spice in your own and others’ lives.
I was told from the beginning of junior high I was mature for my age. I didn’t, and still don’t, get caught up in all the drama of teenagers who thirst for that self-recognition. Who has the nicest car, most expensive clothes, or hottest boyfriend in school doesn’t matter to me. It is high school. Sorry to break it to all of you who don’t already know this, but I almost guarantee those things won’t last. The glitz and glamor of it all will soon wear off and it won’t matter how many parties you went to or how many classes you flunked because that was what was ‘cool’. Newsflash people: When you get old and wrinkly do you really think any of that is going to matter? That smart kid who used to sit across the classroom from you is wildly successful with an amazing family and a couple of good lifelong friends. People who are self-absorbed live in the moment. They do not care about the future because the future has not arrived yet, so why plan ahead? People who are of this nature drive me crazy.
I have a plan in life. Yes, it may sound a bit beyond my years saying this, but it is something I have always dreamt of. I do not want loads of money, just enough to get by comfortably. Physical possessions are inanimate so why do people put so much value on them? Why not cherish the things that matter most? I know I am not the prettiest, most well dressed, or popular kid in the school by any means. But I am confident in who I am and who I want to become and that is all that matters. I want to find a man who loves me for who I truly am. I want someone to grow old with. To have children and provide them with life’s greatest opportunities. Yes, it sounds kind of premature for a grade eleven student to have this as a goal, but I am not letting my self-consciousness change who I am, turning me into someone I’m not. Laura let this happen to her. She let the people around her have too much of an influence on her because she was not ‘normal’. What is wrong with being a Unicorn instead of a horse?
“You live in a dream; you manufacture illusions.” – Amanda pg. 95
In the above quote Amanda is referring to Tom’s thirst for adventure and to exercise his imagination. I believe that there are two different types of people, dreamers and those that accept reality. The longing for a greater purpose than what is currently given is inside every dreamer. Tom being a dreamer attempts to create his own illusions of adventure. Without being satisfied with his illusions he becomes a dream chaser.
Don’t we all want an illusion that we created to come true? The feeling of an imaginative concept becoming reality is intangible.
Looking at the successful people within society and history, like Albert Einstein or Winston Churchill, they all started with a dream. As Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “I have a dream…” If their dreams had not been conjured; then society, our world, would not be the same without them creating it into a reality.
Is living in a dream better then attempting to live in the reality surrounding you? Creating a place to escape from the stresses surrounding your life to a place where you have the control to fly, be happy, or leap buildings within a single bound is what many people adore. Laura found serenity and calming with her glass collection. Many people have the security that they need in their dreams. The false reality created can hide a person’s personality. Laura for example was so hidden in her dreams of being accepted and staying hidden from the outside world that she had shut out the reality around her. She was content with her dreams and the world of her glass menagerie.
“Don’t part with your illusions. When they are gone, you may still exist, but you have ceased to live.” – Mark Twain. The connection between reality and the illusions made can be connected by a strand. The dreams that you have can motivate one to set out to complete them.
Now the real question is, are you a dreamer or accept the given reality?
“We nailed him into a coffin and he got out of the coffin without removing a single nail.” -Tom, Page 27
Tom’s favorite magic trick was when the magician got out of a coffin without removing a single nail. Tom wishes that he could leave his family like the magician left the coffin, without removing a single nail similar to not having any consequences. He wants to have more adventure in his life and feels he can do that by joining the Merchant Union of Seamen. But if he leaves before Laura gets married he would leave his family with nothing but a memory, just like Mr. Wingfield . Toms knows this is wrong, which is why he stays even though he is miserable and wants to escape.
Toms is being selfish in his decision. I understand that he has a poets soul and wants to be free but people can’t always live life how they want to. I know that it wasn’t Toms fault that his father left but it wasn’t Amanda or Laura’s either. Tom is the main source of income and if he was to leave Amanda and Laura would end up homeless. Even though Tom has been dealt a bad hand in life he still needs to make the right choice. The repercussions of his leaving would leave the people he loves without a home. Once he removes a single nail which would be leaving the family, it would cause the other nails to come out as well. Laura and Amanda would miss him dearly and everything would start going wrong for them. They would not be able to pay the rent and Laura’s hope of finding a husband would go out the door-just like Tom.
People cannot make life altering decisions without consequences. Just like Tom wanting to leave his family in the play his choice will have consequences to go along with it. The consequences of each decision in life can haunt you forever if the decision was made out of selfishness. In Tom’s last monologue he talks about being pursued by something that kept him going. Was the thing that pursued him the guilt of leaving his sister? Did he ever get over his abandonment of Laura? We can see from this that it is not possible to get out of a coffin without removing a single nail. Unless we somehow make ourselves not think of the underlying penalties of our actions. Tom and people in general try to forget about the cost of their choices by distracting themselves with things such as drugs and alcohol, that can make them forget, even if it is just for a moment.
“Laura seems all those things to you and me because she’s ours and we love her. We don’t even notice she’s crippled anymore.”
This quote is from the play The Glass Menagerie written by Tennessee Williams. It shows the defying power that love can have over flaws, and how when we love something enough, everything that is wrong about it can make it seem right. As human beings we all make mistakes, and choose to do the wrong thing, but this is what makes us who we are. This quote explains that even if nothing is perfect, or crippled, it still has many uses and is never just worthless.
Love: a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person. Even if we consider ourselves damaged, or of no value, we must always remember that we could mean more than money can buy to someone who loves who we are. People ask how we can change our world for the better, how to remove hatred and live life together. The answer to that question is already known, it is the unconditional love that as humans have the gift to feel. To not judge each other and let our flaws get in the way of our beauty. If we all loved each other enough to get past the imperfections, the world would have no cripples, or dents; only individuality, differences, that make us all unique. So yes, although you may have those insecurities, do not let it define you. Let it make you special, beautiful in your own distinctive way.
“Be different so that people can see you clearly amongst the crowds.” Always remember that one day, you will find someone who looks at you and does not see mistakes, just love. Never give up hope on finding someone who will not judge for what they see at first glance, because there will be someone who will look at you for what you are inside and the beauty that is held within you. Be beautiful, be courageous, but always love in front of everything else; it is one of the things we all can give to this world.
A mouse’s monologue:
Hello! My oh my, what a wonderful day. Zip-adee-doo-da! Zip-adee-day!
I’m a blind mouse, a scared mouse, a mouse that only has two friends. I’m a nervous mouse, but a curious mouse, a mouse whose adventure never ends. I want to see the world but the truth is I cannot see. Oh but I dream to see, to see the sea, and to be able to just be me. I have a dream, a special dream, one unlike my friends’. They only want cheese, the biggest cheese, but for me, adventure never ends. I dream to swim and surf and dive, climb Mount Everest and yell “I survived!”, but I can’t.
I could, but I simply can’t.
I’m a blind mouse and a scared mouse and a mouse that only has two friends. I’m a nervous mouse, but a curious mouse, a mouse whose adventure never—CAT!
Run, run, run away!
A wall, oh dear, other way! Jump, leap, what’s this? Oh no! I hear the lion, I hear the beast, I want to get away! Away, away, away!
Silence? Oh good, so like I was saying, I’m a blind mouse, a scared mouse, but, oh my… What is this softness? Mmm, no more danger here I say, I’m the mouse who got away, the danger, what danger? I cannot see anything. I can’t see you; you can’t see me, hahaha! Oh how lucky it is to be a blind mouse, a strong mouse, a mouse that has dreams! I don’t want cheese, I want Belize! I want to run away. I dream to say this blindness is a blessing in disguise, but oh, oh my! Ha-ha! What a surprise! It tickles! The softness it tickles! If this is danger, let it be, this is a new adventure for me!
*chomp chomp chomp chomp meowwwwww*
*Cat licks lips*
An echo from the distance: “Goodbye!”
“We nailed him into a coffin and he got out of the coffin without removing a single nail.” -Tom, Page 27
Tom’s favorite magic trick was when a magician escaped from a coffin without disturbing a single nail. Just like the trick Tom wishes that he could leave the control of his mother like the magician left the coffin, without upsetting his sister similar to not removing a single nail. Tom wants more adventure in his life and feels he can do that by abandoning his family. If Tom leaves before Laura gets married his family would be left with nothing but a memory of him, just like that of Mr. Wingfield. Tom knows this is wrong, which is why he stays even though he is miserable and wants to escape.
I think that Tom is being selfish in his decision to leave. I understand that he has the soul of a poet and wants to be free but people cannot always live life how they choose. I know that it was not Tom’s fault that his father left when he was young, but it was not Amanda or Laura’s fault either. Tom is the main source of income for the household and if he were to leave, Amanda and Laura would have nothing to support them. Even though Tom has been dealt a bad hand in life he still needs to make the right choice. The repercussions of his abandonment would leave the people he loves without a home. After the first nail is removed, the coffin would not be able to stay together anymore. Laura and Amanda would miss him dearly and would not be able to survive without him. Without Toms income, they would not be able to pay the rent and Laura’s hope of finding a husband would go out the door, just like Tom.
People cannot make life altering decisions without having any consequences. Tom wanting to leave his family in the play will have consequences to go along with it. The consequences of each decision made in life can haunt you forever, if the decision was made out of selfishness. In Tom’s last monologue he talks about being pursued by something that kept him going all these years. Was the thing that pursued him the guilt of leaving his sister? Did he ever get over his abandonment of Laura? We can see from Tom’s actions that it is not possible to get out of a coffin without removing a single nail. The only way people may think the trick is possible is if they make themselves not think of the underlying penalties of their actions. Tom and people in society try to forget about the cost of their choices by distracting themselves with bad things such as drugs and alcohol. These bad things may hurt them but they can make them forget, even if it is just for a moment..