Belonging has the potential innate ability to demean the human experience, paradoxically having the ability to enhance the experiences through life. Maslow believes that belonging is a necessity for every individual, even more so than confidence, achievement and self-esteem. Recognition of similarities and differences can bestow a sense of belonging but also potentially boycott diversity and change.
Belonging as a potentially positive force is recognized in the poet’s representation of his father’s connection to his past. The metaphor describing his father keeping pace “with the joneses of his own mind’s making” evoking his fathers immersion in the polish culture and his indifference to the world surrounding. Additionally the authors use of simile depicting the fathers “love” for “his garden” coupled with his fathers “fingers with cracks like the sods he broke” is suggestive of a deep emotional attachment to his garden which serves as a symbol of his agrarian heritage or his stoic indifference to new culture. This sense of contentment, culminates in a deep sense of tranquility that shapes his fathers connection to his pact, evident of the emotive enjambment where the poet describes his father as he “sits out in the evening/with his dog, smoking, watching stars and street lights come on, happy as I have never been.” Suggesting that a deep sense of belonging contributes to a positive sense of self and personal identity. Paradoxically, Felik’s immersion into his polish heritage inhibits his capacity to assimilate and contribute to inevitable sense of separation within the rift between father and son. The rhetorical question asking if his “father” ever attempted “to learn English?” combined with the metaphor describing the ‘clerk’ asking in “dancing bear grunts” reveals lack of empathy, as well as hostility between Feliks’ and his immediate culture, a product of his reluctance to assimilate. This separation is reinforced by the metaphorical,...
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