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This Is a Photograph of Me Analysis

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    While reading the poem ‘This is a Photograph of Me’ by Margaret Atwood, it is shown that while growing up she was blurred, unimportant and she was never heard. The writer talks about a picture that was taken a long time ago. We don’t know many details about the picture, not even simple things such as whom it is about, but we get the sense that the author is talking about themself being in the picture.

    It is proven that the speaker has written about themself when Atwood states, “…If you look long enough, eventually, you will be able to see me” (Atwood. 7. 1-3). Thus, showing that the speaker writes this poem about themself, I see that they were a midst the most peaceful landscape but yet their true self was hidden beneath many false layers. They were in the center of the photograph yet they were not seen by anyone.

    No one could see what they were going through all of this time as they were obviously very good at hiding their inner emotions. Clearly she is saying that we aren’t always what we display to be, in other words you can’t judge a book by its cover. The fact that the speaker is drowned in the photograph describes their lost soul. They were overwhelmed, drowning, in the many problems going on around them and no one else saw these problems because the person appeared as though they were doing just fine.

    The narrator seems to place all of the unimportant details of the poem inside brackets, thus pointing out the species of trees was inside the brackets, as well as the narrators whole life story. This reveals that they thought they were just as unimportant as the species of tree. Based on the shown abandonment and rejection throughout the life of this person, as well as the mood and the theme of the poem, I feel that they committed suicide as their last resort to have a voice, and get their message across to the people that neglected them in the first place.

    Before they were given the chance to figure out who they were meant to be in life, it was taken from them in an instant, simply showing how we should be more careful about the way we treat people and things; they aren’t always going to admit to their hurt feelings, which means they will go on with life thinking they are unworthy or that they don’t have much significance to life at all. Nonetheless they seemed to have a false sense of peace throughout the poem, and in the end we can finally piece together that this photograph symbolizes how their whole life was spent; blending in and being unnoticed.

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