Analysis Of 'Centering' By Mary Caroline Richards

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Mary Caroline Richards’ “Centering” eloquently deals with the contemplative questioning of all of life’s complex opposites. This piece poetically offers the centering of clay on a potter 's wheel as a metaphor for bringing the contradictions of our psyche into conjunction with one another. My essay will dissect and analyze Richards’ writing and use of diction to demonstrate how she treats “centering” as a never-ending journey rather than a destination to be reached.
The title, “Centering”, is one word foreshadowing the theme of becoming “one with oneself.” Throughout the article, the use of run-on, prolonged sentences and verbosity can be read as mirroring Richards’ conceptualization of the process of “centering”; that it goes on longer than
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Expressions such as “I use”, “for me”, and “I think” soften the tone of the message; sounding unpretentious. This use of pronouns allows for statements to come across graciously, perhaps preventing the reader from reacting negatively. “A continual process” is unassuming as opposed to “the continual process.” A phrase like “Saying yes,” conveys a more optimistic personal choice than “accepting” for the welcoming of enlightened, joyous moments along with failure and life lessons. The phrase “not widely understood” comes across as critical but not harsh. “Trendy” taps into negative connotations, something ephemeral and superficial. The dashes, immediately after the word, give the reader a moment to think about this before pulling back with an “I …show more content…
Like shaping ones life, the potter’s process can be enjoyable, but can be quite messy as well. Simultaneously “Expanding the consciousness” (having an open mind) and “the focus” is like the potter working towards the desired result yet his or her creative spirit can choose to alter the shape during the process; we shape our lives. Inversely, the clay pushes against the artist’s hands just as life can push back. Describing this dynamic process, Richards changes from her pattern of using “I” (in the first two paragraphs) to using “you” several times. This pronoun use is more personal than “one” and some readers may visualize themselves shaping the clay in all directions (“you” are the artist of your

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