Reality In Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak

894 Words 4 Pages
You are walking through the forest and come upon a tree with no leaves and what appears to be little life. Most people would assume it is dead based on its appearance without a second thought. However, what if there is life beneath the surface of the tree? What if the appearance of the tree does not reflect its reality? Appearances versus reality is a main theme reflected in Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak. Throughout the novel, Melinda’s appearance does not reflect who she is inside; however, she begins to realize that her appearance does not define her. The disconnect between appearances and reality has already affected Melinda Sordino’s life before the novel begins. Melinda has been ostracized because her peers believe that she has called …show more content…
It is not until much later in the novel when Melinda realizes that there is more to her than what is on the surface. This is first seen when Melinda goes to the hospital on the day she skips school. She realizes, “There is nothing wrong with me. These are really sick people. Sick that you can actually see” (113). Melinda is now realizing that while you cannot truly see what is wrong with her physically, her mental state warrants concern. Her second and most important realization comes when she is sitting on her roof observing her yard. Melinda makes a very astute insight that could be applied to her as well. She thinks, “Slush is frozen over. Underground, pale seeds roll over in their sleep. Starting to get restless. Starting to dream green” (133). This is Melinda’s biggest breakthrough in terms of realizing that she is more than what she appears. I positioned both quotes on green leaves at the top of the tree on my project, symbolizing that these were the times that Melinda began to grow. She observes that beneath the frozen exterior, there are baby plants just waiting to burst through the ice. This is much like her own inner thoughts and feelings. Even though she does not appear this way, Melinda is actually teeming with life beneath her barren

Related Documents