A barely mobile hard roll, a four-oared helmet,. Even being practical,. With everything optimal,. Used by permission of Copper Beech Press. Abusing Animals in the Name of Poetry. From Poetry Off the Shelf May Kay Ryan asks, "Who would be a turtle? Read More. Kay Ryan: Essential American Poets. From Essential American Poets October From Audio Poem of the Day October From Audio Poem of the Day September More Poems by Kay Ryan. Tar Babies. Rats' Tails. On the Difficulty of Drawing Oneself Up.
See All Poems by this Author. See a problem on this page? However, she believes these figures sell themselves short to keep their fame. On the flip side, the frogs are not the only people this poem is aimed at. Using Frog Goo people no longer have to worry about their suits being moved around by the waves.
Instead people can enjoy the beach and the waves. Ironically however, while tuna will not die if they are pushed to swim at extreme speeds for long periods of time, they can perish if they are restrained and prevented from swimming because they must keep moving in order to obtain oxygen and keep blood flowing. It would seem that even tuna are not entirely immune to all of the problems and limitations of exercise in the ocean. Mental toughness is bigger than physical toughness. It is the kind of strength that forces you to keep going when your body doesn 't want to.
It is the kind of strength that helps you succeed when obstacles come in your way. And they will come! So many people take care of their physical health and strength, but lack when it comes to their mental health and strength. Open Document. Essay Sample Check Writing Quality. Despite the struggles that she faces, the turtle exhibits a multitude of different strengths to overcome them, as seen as the poem progresses. The question sets up the turtle as a weak animal and forces the reader to read the rest of the poem knowing that the turtle is a poor, miserable creature.
However, as the reader goes on, he or she will realize that this is not the case. When one is struggling to move a heavy package, one usually starts to push or pull it slowly; one is using all his strength to move it, yet the package barely moves. The lethargic movement of moving the package is similar to the slowness of the turtle.
This slowness is an obstacle because it prevents the turtle from travelling far distances and escaping from predators. Nevertheless, the fact that the turtle perseveres through this struggle shows that she is. Get Access. Satisfactory Essays. Dolphin Essay Words 2 Pages. Dolphin Essay. Read More. Declining Population of Loggerhead Sea Turtle.
However, human nature expresses itself in a variety of ways and these differences make everyone an individual. Civil rights activists have recently made a strong effort to encourage people to embrace and express their differences. The recent push for a more open society has resulted in both backlash and acceptance.
She uses the turtle, an often ill-suited creature in regard to survival, to contradict the common misconception that people can choose their sexuality. Kay Ryan, an open lesbian, often uses poetry to express her position on particular subjects in regard to sexual orientation.
From the first line of the poem, Kay Ryan sets up her argument. American society often vilifies people for their sexuality. Teenagers find themselves homeless and adults without jobs, despite what any law says. Many of us actually never outgrow that love of animals. Watching a bird fly overhead, we can't help but imagine ourselves surfing those currents of air. Pop quiz: If you could be any animal, which animal would you choose to be?
In her poem "Turtle," Kay Ryan turns this question on its head, identifying the turtle as an animal that people wouldn't choose to be. Through a startling series of word pictures, the remainder of the poem goes on to show us why the life of a turtle is so tough and unenviable. When she published "Turtle" in , Ryan was 49 years old. A slow starter, she did not even start writing poetry until she was 30, and like the turtle in her poem, had only "modest hopes" of success.
Yet, she persevered, eventually earning the respect of a literary establishment that initially discounted her work. In she was appointed the nation's Poet Laureate. Ryan acknowledges that she wrote "Turtle" during a time of personal frustration. That sentiment is certainly present in the poem, which describes the turtle's awkward struggle merely to eat and not be eaten. As readers, we can't help identifying with this clumsy creature, despite the speaker's warnings not to get involved.
But frustration isn't the only emotion the tale of the turtle evokes. Rather, the poet's concoction of whimsical images and meaning-packed words creates a unique emotional chemistry. What emotions do you experience when you read "Turtle"? Those feelings may tell you something interesting about yourself, not to mention the turtle. Remember Aesop's fable about the race between the tortoise and the hare? While the boastful, over-confident rabbit pauses for a nap, the turtle perseveres, plodding to victory.
Moral: Slow and steady progress wins the race. On the one hand, you have to love it. Who doesn't enjoy rooting for the underdog or, in this case, the under-turtle? On the other hand, doesn't "slow" seem just a little, well, boring? In Kay Ryan 's poem "Turtle," boredom is the least of the turtle's problems.
This solitary creature is struggling simply to survive, and it's a lonely business. She must make or break it on her own. Come to think of it, the same might be said for human beings. Though ours is a social species, nobody can live your life for you. And some days, life can seem awfully hard. So, is this, like, a really depressing poem? If so, the turtle lovers among us might be a little put off.
Shmoop, for one, thinks turtles are actually pretty cute, so we're not sure about the Debby Downer attitude. Not to worry, though. There's another side to Kay Ryan—a funny side. In fact, she's one of those rare poets who know how to be serious and funny at the same time. If you feel worse after you've read it, then I've failed. So take the poet at her word, and test out the poem for yourself.
Does the image of the turtle as a "four-oared helmet" tickle your funny bone just a bit? By the end of the poem, are you smiling or frowning? As you explore these questions, take care to avoid the rabbit's mistake: don't underestimate that turtle. Some days we all feel like losers, but the turtle in Aesop's fable didn't end up as a loser, and maybe—just maybe—the turtle in Kay Ryan's poem won't either.