Symbolism in "Out, Out..." by Robert FrostI need some help with the literary element of symbolism in this poem. Is one symbolic object in the poem the saw? What is it symbolizing?

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kiwi's profile pic

kiwi | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

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There is the symbolic nature of the title 'Out, Out -', in that it is taken from the Shakespeare play Macbeth. An answer to a previous question on the poem summarises the effect that Frost was trying to create with this choice of title

http://www.enotes.com/out-out/q-and-a/how-name-out-out-poem-by-robert-frost-relevant-27231

Both writers are exploring the unpredictability and futility of life and death.

lmetcalf's profile pic

lmetcalf | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The saw is an excellent example of a symbol in the poem.  The saw that seems to "leap" with a life of its own and subsequently cuts off the boys hand can be seen to symbolize fate.  The boy didn't expect this catastrophic event, but he ended up fated to die this day in this accident.  The saw can symbolize violence in that the death is a very violent, bloody event.

Another symbol in the poem is the blood -- it symbolizes life and when it "runs out" of the boys severed arm his life literally runs out and he dies.

deww6's profile pic

deww6 | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) Honors

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The saw is an excellent example of a symbol in the poem.  The saw that seems to "leap" with a life of its own and subsequently cuts off the boys hand can be seen to symbolize fate.  The boy didn't expect this catastrophic event, but he ended up fated to die this day in this accident.  The saw can symbolize violence in that the death is a very violent, bloody event.

Another symbol in the poem is the blood -- it symbolizes life and when it "runs out" of the boys severed arm his life literally runs out and he dies.

wrong infact the saw is a method of creating tradegedy

jjlbbb's profile pic

jjlbbb | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

The saw is an excellent example of a symbol in the poem.  The saw that seems to "leap" with a life of its own and subsequently cuts off the boys hand can be seen to symbolize fate.  The boy didn't expect this catastrophic event, but he ended up fated to die this day in this accident.  The saw can symbolize violence in that the death is a very violent, bloody event.

Another symbol in the poem is the blood -- it symbolizes life and when it "runs out" of the boys severed arm his life literally runs out and he dies.

Thank you for your help. I have a better understanding now. :)

 

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