Naming of the Parts Essay In Henry Reed’s poem “Naming of The Parts” he achieves his purpose by pushing the idea of an officer and a student. Reed achieves it through such literary techniques as contrast, repetition, rhythm, and detail. Henry Reed wrote this poem in a unique style. In the first four sections he had a particular way of ending a thought using repetition. In line four he ended with “naming of the parts. ” In line six he ends it the same, which brings you to the way he uses repetition. For the next three stanzas he does the same. In Reeds poem you see the common divide of thought in each stanza.
So you can infer that the poem is told from two points of view. You also infer that the poem could be about a boot camp, and that the two thoughts could be the officer speaking and the bored student mocking the officer. Out of the two people you see that it is clear that the first speaker is the sergeant and the other is a student. In the first stanza Reed writes “Today we have naming of the parts. Yesterday, we had daily cleaning. And tomorrow morning we shall have what to do after firing. ” In this stanza he discusses a schedule. What they’re doing for the week, which introduces the idea of the setting being in a boot camp.
Through the poem you see the student gets off track. While the sergeant speaks of guns, the student speaks of gardens, bees, and eloquent gestures. As the boy keeps talking you infer that he is talking about a girl which is in reference to the sergeant’s gun. As Reed continues to write in the student’s point of view Reed starts to write perverted. You see that the students which are teenagers, probably 18/19 are missing contact with the opposite sex which provides them with The "parts" of weapons such as guns are ironically analogous to sexual parts.
Through Reeds poem objects and actions are given double significance. An example is given on line 15-18, “you can do it quite easy if you have any strength in your thumb. The blossoms are fragile and motionless, never letting anyone see any of them using their finger,” which you can finger out the meaning for yourself quite easily. The way the author contrasted the teacher and student was significant. It was in the way the student spoke, and how sarcastic and bored his tone was. Compared to the sergeant’s straight edge monotone speaking.
An example is given on line 13-15, “this is the safety-catch, which is always released with an easy flick of the thumb. And please do not let me see anyone using his finger. ” These lines are bland the sergeant does not joke or poke fun with the students; he gets straight to the point and leaves no room for errors. The other literary technique that caught the eye was detail. Henry Reed was pretty descriptive, talking about the parts of a gun, and the student wondering off into talking about girls.