How is contrast used in "The Leap," and how effective is it? 

Expert Answers
pmiranda2857 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The narrator uses contrast throughout the story to illustrate what her choices were and how her decisions shaped her life.  The story is told by the daughter of an acrobat named Anna, who made choices that the narrator tells the reader have saved her life, the daughter, three times.

One perfect example of the author's use of contrast, in particular, is when the acrobat's daughter, the narrator, is stuck in their burning house.  Told that rescue is hopeless,  the acrobat, mother makes a different choice, however, swinging onto the roof of the house, inching her way towards her daughter.  She saves her daughter, climbing out a window and jumping into the fireman's net.   

"The most obvious are the two physical leaps made by Anna, as a trapeze artist, to save herself and her children from fire."