Essay on Analysis of Hermie

1028 Words Mar 28th, 2015 5 Pages
Hermie by Nathaniel Rich

The short story ”Hermie” written by Nathaniel Rich portrays the story of a grown marine biologist, who suddenly sees his childhood imaginary friend the crab, Hermie. Though the story at first sight only portrays an encounter between an adult and a forgotten friend, something much deeper hides beneath this tale. It is the story of an insecure man’s sub conscience.
The narrator is a married man, living with his wife and 3-year old daughter in Philadelphia. His well-considered thoughts on everything from the hygiene of the restroom to the reason of Hermie’s sudden appearance suggests that he is an intellectual and intelligent man, which is a contradicting aspect to the fact that he is having a conversation with a
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He grows up by letting go of his childhood comfort, like letting go of a security blanket that you hold on to for comfort. This decision to move on is not clear to him. His mind is split, which also is shown through the conversation between the narrator and Hermie. “’Can’t you pick up and move to another beach?’ I asked. ‘I tried … The whole key is disappearing’” (p. 95 – ll. 26-28). From this quote, it can be deduced that the narrator is having an internal conflict. As much as he wants to move on, he still wishes that he could have the comfort of knowing that he could always revisit this childhood memory. However, Hermie’s reply is the narrator’s subconscious way of disproving this possibility. There is no way to retain this piece of comfort and deep inside he is aware of this, which is why Hermie denies this possibility. Therefore the encounter between Hermie and the narrator is a way for the author to show that Hermie is a symbol of the narrator’s sub conscience.
At first the narrator does not recognize his childhood friend, most likely because of denial and the drastic change that the crab has undergone. “Gone was the buyscon spiratum I remembered so well … In its place was a filthy, unwieldy, carbuncled husk, to which there clung small bits of wet garbage and sea gunk” (p. 92 – ll. 14-15 and 19-20). This severe change is a symbol of the change in

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