How many times will the young heroine, Sylvia, recount what she deems as her greatest achievement in life? Just how many times will she share her adventure with her grandchildren, friends, family, educators and other adults? Perhaps, having done this while still young makes it all the better story to share.
Jewett’s A White Heron is an impressive literary piece that utilizes elements such as diction, imagery, narrative pace, and point of view in helping her illustrate the young heroine’s adventure throughout her climb. By incorporating all four literary elements listed above makes the young heroine’s journey a momentous memory not just to her but to others she tells. Jewett’s diction utilizes positive connotations, and her use of imagery helps paint vivid images of what Sylvia has experienced from her climb. The phrase “…
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tingling, eager blood coursing the channels of her whole frame…” is an example of a positive connotation and imagery because it implies that Sylvia has been building up to this moment where she can, finally, reach the top. Throughout the passage, Sylvia is seen as courageous and heroic, conquering “the great pine tree” while she, herself, is “small and silly.” Jewett has the advantage of using both elements together enhancing the adventure not only limited to her but for the audience as well.
Reaching the peak of the tree, Sylvia’s accomplishments are established with beautiful description of the seascape: “she stood trembling and tired but wholly triumphant, high in the tree top” and “sea with the dawning sun making a golden dazzle over it.” Small details like these are what dramatizes her adventure. Jewett’s pace of narrating Sylvia’s adventure makes it possible for the audience to keep as much information as they can as the story unfolds. The passage consists of multiple periodic sentences which build the suspense of what is about to come. Sylvia’s journey, as written by Jewett, may be shortened to at least one long paragraph but, instead, is written in five—all five paragraphs are in great detail describing the before, during, and after.
The narrative pace varies according to Sylvia’s progress as she prepares before her climb, switching trees to go up and reaching the top of the tree. It seems as if