Essay Crossing - Mark Slouka

1207 Words Apr 27th, 2015 5 Pages
Crossing - Mark Slouka
We all make mistakes in our lives. We lose the people we love and we break bonds of trust we otherwise thought were unbreakable. The tragic thing is that no matter how much we want to make things right, there will always be the great risk of making yet another error. In Mark Slouka’s Crossing a divorced man takes his young son out on a camping trip, seeking to rebuild their relationship by conquering the river Quinault. But few circumstances can be controlled when you’re dealing with nature and the risk of making a fatal mistake whilst crossing the thin line of trust and the river might be too big. In this essay the characters and the relationships between them, the narrative technique and the setting will be
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The task is clearly daunting to the father but when the first crossing goes well his ‘’…vision of death like a tunnel at the end of the road …(line 69)’’ disappears and he has faith that he and his son bonded over the experience. When they have to get back across the next day, however, things don’t go as planned and he puts the both of them in grave danger of being taken by the river. In this moment of panic it is expressed that the divorce was his own fault, ‘’My God, all of his other fuckups were just preparations for this. (line 135)’’ Throughout the story the protagonist is very reflective and his thoughts are characterized by nervousness and anxiousness. Other than setting the somewhat tense mood, the thoughts serve another very important purpose.
It is through the protagonist thoughts that the story is told although it is not told by him as a first person narrator. Instead, the author uses a third person narrator bound to the father. The story is written in past tense and the narrator knows what is going to occur because he gives small hints to the dangers ahead throughout the story. This creates a sense of suspense and keeps the reader anxiously waiting for the climax. The language used in the story is simple, contemporary and informal but there are certain factors to consider. There is a small amount of direct speech but the talking is only done by the father and this gives further insight to the troubled relationship between him and his son. There is also a

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