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Once More to the Lake by E.B. White

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Summary of 'Once More to the Lake'
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How the once gravel roads have been paved over, and the sail boats are now replace with boats with outboard motors. As the reader, one can sense a feeling of how the father isn't able to adapt to these changes. The little boy in the story, the son, also doesn't seem to appreciate the lake as much as the father did when he was growing up. Like how when he was a boy, he would wake up early to fish.

Now the father wishes his son would do the same. It seemed the little boy just too the trip for granted. He didn't appear to be as appreciative as the father once was. The father describes the view as pretty much being the same. How things felt the same, like the moss on his feet and such.

He didn't feel that the lake had changed any, but everything around it did. This is when the idea of a duel personality comes into picture. I felt dizzy and didn't know which rod I was at the end of. In this passage, we see the first of many themes. The word choices 'dizzy' and 'memory' reinforce the idea that this essay is an emotional reflection on the passage of time. The setting of the lake, and White's childhood associations with the lake, demonstrate that White is denying his own mortality.

White's refusal to accept that he is now the father, not the child, demonstrates the theme of man versus himself, since the speaker is facing an internal conflict. Part of White's conflict is that he yearns to dip back into the past, reliving his adolescence:.

I kept remembering everything, lying in bed in the mornings - the small steamboat that had a long rounded stern like the lip of a Ubangi, and how quietly she ran on the moonlight sails, when the older boys played their mandolins and the girls sang and we ate doughnuts dipped in sugar, and how sweet the music was on the water in the shining night, and what it had felt like to think about girls then.

The sensory details , which are details that engage the five senses, pervade this passage, allowing us to hear the sound of mandolins; we can hear the girls singing; we can taste the sugar-dipped donuts; we can see the moonlight sails. White longs to relive these years when he first started to think about girls. In a sense, White may be experiencing what you'd call a mid-life crisis, but by the end of his essay, the crisis is resolved. While time has preserved White's lake, what he calls a 'holy spot,' there were moments that forced White to acknowledge that, indeed, time had passed.

White views this as an interruption to his nostalgia. Nostalgia is a romantic, rose-colored way of looking at the past. This interruption surfaces as he compares how the boats from his childhood sounded compared to modern boats:.

The only thing that was wrong now, really, was the sound of the place, an unfamiliar nervous sound of the outboard motors. This was the note that jarred, the one thing that would sometimes break the illusion and set the years moving. In those other summertimes, all motors were inboard; and when they were at a little distance, the noise they made was a sedative, an ingredient of summer sleep.

Get access risk-free for 30 days, just create an account. The sound of the newer motorboats prevents White from thoroughly reliving his own childhood. He longs for the 'sedative' sound of the inboard motor boats. This jarring moment also demonstrates another popular theme, man versus technology.

In essence, the advancement of technology destroys the simplicity of a more natural, rural setting. White's major transformation occurs as he describes a passing thunderstorm and when, after the rain, everyone runs back into the lake:.

When the others went swimming my son said he was going in too. He pulled his dripping trunks from the line where they had hung all through the shower, and wrung them out. Languidly, and with no thought of going in, I watched him, his hard little body, skinny and bare, saw him wince slightly as he pulled up around his vitals the small, soggy, icy garment. As he buckled the swollen belt suddenly my groin felt the chill of death.

Here, we can see White marveling at his son's 'hard little body. When White watches his young son buckle his belt, White feels the 'chill of death. This sheds light on yet another theme, that of the parent and child. White's vivid personal essay 'Once More to the Lake,' the lake serves as the setting for both the author's past and present.

The essay moves in a non-linear non-chronological way as White weaves in and out of the past and present, following the flow of his mental process, or as what many would call stream-of-consciousness. White also uses sensory details , which are details that engage the five senses and nostalgia , a romantic, rose-colored way of looking at the past, to tell his story.

Other themes in the essay include man versus technology and parent and child. To unlock this lesson you must be a Study. Did you know… We have over college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1, colleges and universities.

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This transformative essay contains many themes and rich details lurking beneath the narrative. Read on for a summary and analysis of the text. Try it risk-free for 30 days. An error occurred trying to load this video. Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support. You must create an account to continue watching. Register to view this lesson Are you a student or a teacher? I am a student I am a teacher.

What teachers are saying about Study. Are you still watching? Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds. Add to Add to Add to. Want to watch this again later? Seeing by Annie Dillard: Salvation by Langston Hughes Summary. Champion of the World by Maya Angelou: Amy Tan's Mother Tongue: A second draft of the essay was a letter White wrote to his brother Stanley in the summer of , when he had returned to the lake alone.

In , he brought his son Joel , the experience of which is recorded in "Once More to the Lake". The essay shows White engaging in an internal struggle between acting and viewing the lake as he did when he was a boy and acting and viewing it as an adult, or as his father would have. Although White sees the lake as having remained nearly identical to the lake of his boyhood, technology mars his experience and the new, noisier boats disturb the serene atmosphere at the lake.

This could suggest that technology is impure or damaging, except that the same paragraph contains a lengthy reminiscence in which White rhapsodizes about his boyhood affection for an old one-cylinder engine. The memory balances the theme of technology, suggesting that certain kinds of technology, if a person can "get close to it spiritually," are able to become almost a natural part of one's self.

The author compares the time he went fishing with his dad and how he's fishing now with his son:. I looked at the boy, who was silently watching his fly, and it was my hands that held his rod, my eyes watching. I felt dizzy and didn't know which rod I was at the end of.

He suddenly realizes how death is so close, because he is now the father and not the son. White references this in the final lines:. I watched him, his hard little body, skinny and bare, saw him wince slightly as he pulled up around his vitals the small, soggy, icy garment.

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Once more to the Lake is an essay written by E.B. in which the author tries to establish the links of his present life with his past experiences when he was a little boy.

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“Once More to the Lake” is an essay that is derived mostly from White’s personal experience while “The Ring of Time” is an essay that mostly examines a teenage girl performing at .

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'Once More to the Lake,' an essay written by E.B. White, explores the age-old relationship between a father and his growing son. This transformative essay contains many themes and rich details. Summary Essay -Once more to the lake essaysE.B White, the famous author of Stuart Little and Charlottes Web, also wrote the person essay "Once More to the Lake" in which he explores the relationship between father and son. The essay starts off with a father talking about his experiences.

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Free Essay: E.B. White's Once More to the Lake "Once More to the Lake", by E.B. White was an essay in which a father struggles to find himself. The. Once More To The Lake By E.B. White Once More to the Lake by E.B. White Once More to the Lake, by E.B. White was an essay in which a father struggles to find himself.4/4(1).