On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous Symbols & Objects

Ocean Vuong
This Study Guide consists of approximately 38 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous.
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Monarch Butterflies

The monarch butterflies whose migration the narrator tracks down the coast, symbolize the ever-shifting nature of life and time. Throughout the novel, the narrator uses the butterflies as a means of understanding his own familial evolution. He likens the monarch colony's patterns to his changing relationship to his mother, grandmother, and perception of himself both with and apart from them. In particular, the monarch's timed movements south seem to parallel the narrator's movements between past and present.

The Connecticut River

The Connecticut River along which the narrator grows up, symbolizes the truth the current of time inevitably reveals. Like the river, the movements of the narrator's life and consciousness rushes rapidly through time, flowing over and covering portions of memory he desires to keep hidden. The more he grows beyond his childhood and adolescent experiences, however, the more his mind unearths portions of himself and...

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This section contains 798 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous Study Guide
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