The Death Of The Ball Turret Gunner

Páginas: 3 (651 palabras) Publicado: 10 de enero de 2013
David López Gelo

"The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner," by Randall Jarrell, is a poem that talks about both the roughness of war and –sometimes- the real worthlessness oflife. A ball turret gunner is one of the most dangerous jobs of any airborne crew member. The gunner has little or no room to maneuver. Most of the men choose the fetal position to compensate for thecramped area and extreme weather they have to put up with.
"From my mother's sleep I fell into the State, / And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze" (1-2). The first line seems to show thatno sooner than he was born, he was thrown into this predicament, he is just another number. You must eventually abandon the "womb," either from the fuselage of a plane or your own mother; from thatinstant you may instantly face death.
However, Jarrell may be sending another message. He may be trying to show the unforgiving roughness of war itself, most soldiers being young and straight out ofboot camp. Jarrell is trying to channel the fear and mystery of thousands of young combatants. These young men are shoved into this unexplainable and disturbing environment.
The line, "Six miles fromearth, loosed from its dream of life" (3), also displays the worthlessness of one's life. The gunner, so far away from anything comforting or familiar to him, feels disassociated. The gunner knew itwas only a matter of minutes before he and his comrades would be in the midst of battle.
"I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters" (4). The opposing forces fighter planes are referred to as"nightmare fighters" because they violently awoke the gunner from his dream-like state.
“When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose” (5). The theme of Randall Jarrell's "The Death of theBall Turret Gunner" is that institutionalized violence, or war, creates moral paradox, a condition in which acts repugnant to human nature become appropriate. The "they" of the last line of the...
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