How is the theme of loss presented in "Out, Out--" and "Disabled"?
Both are grim poems that tell the story of a loss experienced by a young man
In "Out, Out—," a boy using a buzz saw is distracted by his sister announcing that it's supper time. The saw seems to "leap" away from him. In doing so, it cuts off his hand. A little later, the boy, who is described as a child doing a man's job, dies. The world moves on, indifferent to his fate.
In "Disabled," a young man enlists to fight in World War I and ends up disabled, losing an arm and both legs. Ironically, he joined the army because being a soldier seemed heroic and made him more attractive to women, but now that he is disabled, women no longer have an interest in him.
Both poems show that mechanized, industrial society—the society that produces buzz saws and the bombs and weapons used in World War I—poses great risks to young men who are not truly ready to handle its dangers. In both poems, a young man either loses his life or loses his hope of a meaningful life because mechanized society does...
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