Ball Turret Gunner Imagery

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Technology is such a big part of our lives that we often forget that there is more than one way to remember the past or any event for that matter. When we see a picture for example, we are immediately taken back to that moment. Right in front of us we have the surroundings, the people, or even the things that were there the day it was taken. Although we do not realize it, when we read a poem there is a very similar effect. If we close our eyes we can can see the picture that the poet is trying to paint with the imagery that is hidden behind every line. Poetry is framed to simultaneously portray the gruesome images of war as well as the reality in the government, while images are only able to show us a picture.
When we think about poems what
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This poem is just what it sounds like, it is about the commitment of a young man to the war and his death while fighting as a ball turret gunner. After his death he narrates his time in the war and from the very first line of the poem he says, “From my mother’s sleep I fell into the State”(92). When we read this line we cannot help but imagine the lifeless body of a man that once wanted nothing more than to fight for his country. As we think about this we also start to wonder about our government and rethink everything that we felt in reading the previous poem. Why would a man possibly volunteer to fight in a war, much less as a ball turret gunner for a government that was truly horrible. While fighting for his country he died and he recalled, “When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose”(92). This is a man who spent his last breathing moment crouched in a fetal position under a plane shooting at others. He gave up his opportunity to have a family or who knows he may have had one but what he gave up instead was the possibility of seeing them again. Whatever the case may be it is hard to think that someone would make such a big sacrifice for a government that wasn’t doing the same for them. This last line also focuses on the fact that his body was washed out with a house. This leads us to ask ourselves whether it was because they just saw him as …show more content…
Franklin himself said, “One can hardly imagine a more complex reversal of the acclaim accorded to Civil War photographers for bringing the reality of war and death home to the American people”(468). Because of this commentary we know that these pictures were a response to the indignation of American citizens after having to see pictures of the gruesome realities of war. Because of this commentary we know that they blamed photographers for letting this misery and destruction enter their homes. Because of this commentary we also know that these pictures could even be seen as a counter attack against the images that they felt were destroying their lives. But the reality is that without this commentary we would not know any of this. It is true that these pictures showe us the perspective and thought of the people of this time but that was only when we were provided the explanation of Franklin. The commentary that Franklin offers in this article is essential to understand the meaning behind these pictures, the events that were going on in society, and the role that government was playing at the

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