Broken Promises In Flying By Alice Miller

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Broken Promises
“Flying” is a short story by Alice Miller. It is about a girl named Allie Lester who has to choose whether keep her promise or break it and fly. The short story starts off with Allie, who is six years old at the time, hanging out with her older cousin Mack. Mack teaches her numerous amount of things when they spend time together, but this particular moment is more special than any time before. Mack shows Allie how to fly; it is such a pleasant and graceful experience. However, once they finish flying, Mack makes her promise that she will not tell anyone and will never try to fly when he is not around because she can get hurt. As time passes on Allie grows older, and during this period she starts to reminisce about the time she flew wishing she could fly again with her cousin Mack. Mack never comes back, leaving Allie to reevaluate the promise she has with her cousin. Allie now has a family with children and a husband and wonders if they possibly know how to fly as well. One day, Allie finally decides to take flight once more and break the promise between Mack and her. The experience of flying again left her in awe, wanting to tell her family, but she is not able to because
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Miller uses diction throughout the short story such as when she uses the word “microscopic” (1). The choice to use microscopic instead of small or tiny provides a stronger sense and feeling to the reader of how the world looks and seems when Allie is flying. Miller uses diction at the end of the story as well using the word “elated” to describe how Allie had felt after she had gone flying by herself (4). The use of the word elated gives off the sense of beyond just plain old happiness and joy but something much greater. Through Miller’s use of diction through the story, she appeals and conveys different feelings in the story that contribute to conflict and strengthen the decision to break the promise

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