Wednesday, April 23, 2008


We all know that a Utopia is defined as an ideal place or state, and is viewed as the benchmark for human society. Everyone idealizes the thought of living in such a state, where everything is perfect and life is at its supposed highest level of achievement. In Szymborska's poem, Utopia, she characterizes such a place with lines like "Island where all becomes clear."; "The Tree of Understanding, dazzlingly straight and simple, sprouts by the spring called Now I Get It."; and "If any doubts arise, the wind dispels them instantly." By describing this place with such close detail, Szymborska appeals to every readers ideas of perfection in society and paints a portrait of an area where it is all possible. However, at the end of the poem Szymborska brings about another idea, one that makes the reader question whether or not a Utopia is actually somewhere we would want to live; "For all its charms, the island is uninhabited, and the faint footprints scattered on its beaches turn without exception to the sea. As if all you can do here is leave and plunge, never to return, into the depths." Because these people had everything, its as if they had nothing to live for. They were seemingly devoid of all life's pleasures, and in turn their lifes became meaningless. With nothing to live for or strive for, everyone living in this supposed "Utopia" left with no intentions of ever returning. Living in this Utopia was essentially an "...unfathomable life."

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