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INLAND BEACH by Margaret Creal
Margaret Creal leaves us with plenty to ponder about as her use of symbolism is used to describe the strength and wisdom of women along with the miracle of birth. Margaret Creal uses symbolism to link the fragility of birth to the delicateness of life.
Margaret Creal describes the scenery at the beginning to illustrate what the surrounding beach looks like, however we can also see that her description also resembles the miracle of birth. It is evident that the bay as representing the “outside world” and the ocean as being still in the women. “The bay empties through a narrow neck into the ocean”(153). This description of the ocean and bay resembles how babies are brought into the world. This description helps the theme of the story as it may not be possible for all readers to figure it out but it is pretty interesting when found.
When Ben tries to get back in from the ocean to the bay he struggles and kicks rhythmically. This is the same as birth in life as it is always difficult to get the child out of the mother. “ I said, I’m trying to come in, and I can’t” (154). The author only allows us to see the story through the mothers eyes so we can never completely get the full impact of what Ben feels as he is fighting to get back in. This directly reflects what happens when babies are thinking when they are brought into the world.
The mood of the story changes dramatically as the mother’s attitude changes rapidly as Ben is stuck in the ocean. The mother is very happy when she gets to the beach as everything is in order but she becomes very angry with Ben, as he does not listen to orders. She is in fear as she finally discovers that Ben is moving further out and he can’t come back in. She then feels pain in her stomach when she thinks that Ben and she are going to die. In the end the mother is happier than ever as a rope that has direct symbolism with an unbiblical cord, the lifeline of an unborn child saves them.
I really liked this short story as it is not quite clear at first what the main focus or theme is. It was not until I read it a couple of times to discover that the author life is a lot like birth. It also gives a good description of what women have to go through to make the biggest miracle on earth happen.
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Time travelers, Birth, Ben Linus, Fiction, Crime
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