What is the connection between the form of poetry that Rosie's mother uses in the story and life that they live?

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litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Rosie is attempting to fit herself into a difficult life, and rectify her Japanese self with her new American self.  She tries to understand her parents’ background and history, and their understanding of life.  Just as Rosie does not understand the poetry her mother writes, she doesn’t understand her mother and the challenges she has faced.

The haiku is a most beautiful form of Japanese poetry.  It consists of three lines with 5 syllables in the first line, 7 syllables in the second line and 5 syllables in the third line, for a total of 17 syllables.  Although the poem type is beautiful and can evoke powerful emotions, because of its minimalism and strict rules it can be stifling.  So although Rosie’s mother has beautiful self-expression, and even wins a prize, she is also limited by her culture, difficult experiences in life and the discrimination in her new country.


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