The Legend Essay

Garrett Hongo
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Goldfarb is a published writer with a Ph.D. in English. In the following essay, he explores the themes of alienation and connection in “The Legend.”

Hongo, a poet of Asia and America who draws on the heritage of both West and East, begins this poem very much in the West. The setting is Chicago, and the poem's opening seems to echo the attitude of a famous poem in the Western canon, William Wordsworth's “Composed upon Westminster Bridge, September 3, 1802,” with its description of the sleepy calm of London as it first awakes, wearing the “beauty of the morning.”

Hongo's poem similarly begins with what at least seems to be a quiet, peaceful scene: It is “snowing softly,” and a man who at this point is not further described is carrying his laundry to his car and enjoying the feel of the “warm laundry and crinkled paper.” It...

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This section contains 1,437 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Legend Study Guide
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