A captive Narrative

The supreme power and greatness of the Mother, together with the faithfulness of her promise displayed, being a narrative of the captivity and restoration of the good dog jade, commended by her, to all that desires to know Mother’s doings to, and dealings with her. On the tenth of February, came more of the “people” with great numbers upon the land: Their first coming was at sunrise; hearing the neighing of the horses, looking out; our grass lay place was being trampled, and the horses were whipped sometimes leaving scars, they’re blood seeping into the land of the great Mother. They took 5 of my brethren dogs, and a puppy, and threw them into the river. My Alpha they took and slit his throat, he had attempted to help the others. I, and my two pups hid but soon they came and took away them both, oh well.

When I saw the two dead pups, the women bowed their head but kept moving, there was no howling or pawing, they did not care, and I too walked away because I had lost my pack. They were wild animals that had no morals.

When I woke I was alone with my ‘owner’.  These strange creatures were hostile, eyeing me often, but then also coming over to rub my head.  Their Alpha wore all black and commanded the others on what to do.  I was on my own with these feral creatures and I thought, “Great Mother give me guidance on what I should do”. Mother was our divine ruler that we worshipped and he was clearly testing me to make sure my faith was real.  We were no longer in the grassy woods where they had first begun to make these odd structures, but in a place with irregular trees put together in what I would assume is their way of shelter. There were no trees around and the smell changed, the land looked ravaged. They were hideous to me, they would feed me what they called ‘bread’ every day, instead of fresh killed meat, and then they would throw a ball and ask me to retrieve, begrudgingly I would while they laughed in joy.  They didn’t circle their food, sniff, and lick it, but nothing happened and either way the food was consumed. The betas and submissive people did not honor their Alpha, when he walked by they did not sniff his butt or bow their heads, they lacked class and respect.

There was one other loyal dog like myself around, they kept a contraption on her mouth. If she lifted her head they would smack her and eventually she would just whimper with her eyes closed.

When the full moon finally arrived after my never ending stay, they stayed in doors, I tried to explain that we needed to be out and run under the moonlight to honor Mother; to find food and honor the great Mother, but they neither cared or understood.

I knew that although this was foreign, If I were to make it out, away from these vial beings, Mother would reward me for my faith and servitude.




In this narrative I choose to follow the syntactical style of Mary Rowlandson in that most sentences I use are long and complex similar to Rowlandson. The diction used to critique the ‘people’ in the narrative are similar to Rowlandson’s choice in that here I use “owner”, and other terms that are familiar to a dog and not a person, similar to how Rowlandson defines most her narrative with terms and ways that only the Puritans would understand which could be creating a narrative bias as well. The events I choose to discuss are in a way mocking Rowlandson’s narrative in that throughout the whole narrative of Rowlandson she acts as though her captors were so terrible although they treated her better and took care of her. In this I choose to make her into a wild dog so as to express this notion of understanding other cultures and the ironic nature of the captive narrative. Rowlandson judges for the differences in culture although there is clearly a structure of class which is why I mention the absurd and incredulous tone of how the people don’t sniff each others butts. That is meant to mock the fascination with class and social etiquette that Rowlandson is obsessed with. In this Narrative, Mother, or more symbolically Mother Nature represents God and the powers and faith needed to believe in such a powerful thing. When the blood spills into the land of mother it’s a reference to when the smoke in the book went up to the heavens. Every part of the narrative is religiously charged.  I also choose to utilize formal diction to emphasize a religiously charged feel as Rowlandson does while simultaneously attempting to mock what little feelings towards others she appears to have. When bad things happen she states it rather than expresses her grief.



-Haley Halsey

Harp of Ireland

Since the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the harp became synonymous with Irishness, an association most notable today in the Guinness Beer Company’s trademark logo (est. 1759).  For next Friday (4/28), students will write a blog post on the symbolic significance of the Irish harp in ONE of the three assigned poems for that week: Thomas Moore, Sydney Owenson, or Henry Derozio.  How do these poets use the cultural history of the harp to convey their nationalist message?  Explain how their poems extend, rewrite, or complicate this history. To help you answer this question, I’ve inserted a link to a scholarly website that traces the long and complex history of the Irish harp in Britain:



The poem by Thomas Moore “Harp of my country” utilizes the Harp as a form of Nationalistic Pride. When there is darkness Moore states he found the harp and thats symbolic of the Irish that are now controlled by the English. And in a way Moore is expressing his reminiscent outlook on the drastic changes that have come about as well. The Harp is the pride and  Joy of the Irish and now he feels as though it has been tainted by the foreigners that don’t really appreciate it which he expresses when he states ” Til touch’d by some hand less unworthy than mine” . This extends history in that it is drawing attention to the changing of the times. Where once the Harp took on a message of freedom and joy it is now the thing that keeps the Irish people bound to the English as almost a form of slavery. It is not used to express freedom and Joy but to entertain the new foreigners diminishing the original feelings the Harp once brought.  The Harp is something that had been mastered and specialized by the Gaelic people for many generations and now it is being glorified in a sense for the wrong reasons. Screen Shot 2017-04-28 at 11.10.32 AM.pngScreen Shot 2017-04-28 at 11.10.21 AM.png

Carlsbad, 2017

Envision Carlsbad; A changing time

Green Trails, soft sand: No real limitations

Trail blazers: Freedom in imaginations

Secret beaches, Hazy blue so sublime

Moonlight lit adventures under the stars

Of inward happiness we are selfish men

Save us from the need of a pictured lens

help us recreate, what now seems so far

A beauty once untouched, secluded sight

A voice we never thought we would ever need

Pure as the white sand, turned black by our greed

Living care-free ,we  forgot our impact

Silent beaches, safety in the star light

Sun kissed and dazed, a land we left ransacked


In my poem I based it off Woodsworth London 1802.  In it he uses the style of Petrarchan sonnets or ‘Italian sonnet’ in which it is written in iambic pentamenter, which has 10 syllabuls in each line and follows generally 5 pairs of stressed and unstressed syllabuls. The overall structure  is Petrarchan sonnet is divided into two parts, an octave (the first eight lines of the poem) and a sestet (the final six lines). The Petrarchan sonnet can take a number of variable rhyme schemes; in this case, the octave (which typically proposes a question or an idea), follows a rhyme scheme of ABBAABBA, and the sestet (which typically answers the question or comments upon the idea) follows a rhyme scheme of BCCDBD (sparknotes). Woodsworth is calling for Milton in almost an outburst in his frustration with the current times of England. He calls out the ‘sword’, the ‘alter’, and the ‘pen’ all symblozing the church, the military, and the English writers of the time for loosing their morals. Woodsworth wants Milton to come back and restore all these great tragedies he sees and return it to a time of the great old England.

Similarly I attempted to follow this pattern by following the structuring and similar ideas with my hometown of Carlsbad. I begin with “Envision Carlsbad” a program where they are focusing on saving and preserving the land of Carlsbad so that more and more people can enjoy the nature and beauty of a beach town with lots of natural areas to explore. A lot of the terms I chose to use are also inunendos in that 10 years ago Carlsbad and a lot of the parks didn’t need to have so much drastic changes for preservation and the city vibes were very laid back and had a lot of emphasis on exploring the nature ( not exactly in the right state of mind). The problem was these people would often drink and smoke and end up trashing up all these great things so that it is no longer the same. There is this beautiful area back home called the mushrooms caves where it is said that a long time ago people would do shrooms and that’s why all the walls are painted so intricately but as more and more people go to visit this place (on a nature reservation) illegally, they leave trash and the sands are filled with the black broken shards of glass. My version of Woodsworth is talking about how im reminiscent of a time before where people would ‘blaze’ and explore the beauties of my hometown before all these rules were implemented by ‘Envision Carlsbad’ but how contradictory that is because my generation was living so care free we quickly and in some places permantely altered the beauty of the beach, trails, and the general feelings. But also, as my hometown is being cleaned up there is no ‘silent beaches’ like there used to be. More and more people are coming and what I once experienced as a child is most likely something I will never experience again. It was a time that was different and because of that it is so important that we do start chaging even if it means altering for the future. All this freedom we experienced for so long is now being traded for preservation and it reminds me of woodsworth poem in that England was experiencing it seems more freedom there was also a loss of moral obligations, and so like Woodsworth is saying he wants to go back to the old times, I personally want everyone to start embracing the new times because the old ways just weren’t working. So in this way I attempted to get the inverse opinion of Woodsworth reflected in my poem.  I also used similar words and phrases from woods worth to really emphasize the point of the need for change and the effects of the greed of people. The first set of the poem talks more about the freedom and indulgences we used to feel and the second set talks of the consequences and how we do desperately need change.

woods worth poem:

Milton! thou shouldst be living at this hour:

England hath need of thee: she is a fen

Of stagnant waters: altar, sword, and pen,

Fireside, the heroic wealth of hall and bower,


Have forfeited their ancient English dower

Of inward happiness. We are selfish men;

Oh! raise us up, return to us again;

And give us manners, virtue, freedom, power.


Thy soul was like a Star, and dwelt apart:

Thou hadst a voice whose sound was like the sea:

Pure as the naked heavens, majestic, free,

So didst thou travel on life’s common way,

In cheerful godliness; and yet thy heart

The lowliest duties on herself did lay.


mushroom caves: you can see the original art and now tampered with graffiti

Haley H.








The picture below relates to the mad mother in that at first it seems depressing and sad but the more you think about it the more it seems to tell a tale of hope. In this picture it seems to be depressing and ominous but there is light in the window that signifies hope and hints that once there could have been a great castle or something there but time has taken its toll. There is a cross and what appears to be graves and so the building may have once been a place of worship. Just like in the mad mother where she says

“Dread not their taunts, my little life!
I am thy father’s wedded wife;
And underneath the spreading tree
We two will live in honesty.
If his sweet boy he could forsake,
With me he never would have stay’d:
From him no harm my babe can take,
But he, poor man! is wretched made,
And every day we two will pray
For him that’s gone and far away.”

She too was once worshiped and now forgotten, and the nature of this poem is sad in itself but it gives hope just like the light in the window. She left her husband and the baby may be dead (not clear) but she wants to for a new life and change from the past. Like the light in the window her baby is her only hope in such a sad and depressing time.




  • Haley H

The Swift Way

I think Swift is utilizing the Houyhnhnms not to present the idea that society is better off if we think and behave like them, but presenting the notion the real ‘yahoos’ are the ones that care so much about unsubstantial things. In every story so far, Gulliver has always attempted to learn the language of the land and learn the customs but has wanted to leave but now in a land of horses he wants to stay. These horses live in a society where they don’t have any word or natural comprehension of what society would equate with ‘sin’ which seems pleasant enough to l

Swift demonstrates that he wants people to neither be the yahoos or the Houyhnhnms when Gulliver states “But I must freely confess, that the many virtues of those quadrupeds placed in opposite View to human Corruptions, had so far opened my eyes and enlarged my Understanding, that I began to view the Actions and Passions of Man in a very different Light, and to think the Honour of my own Kind not worth managing; which, besides, it was impossible for me to do before a person of so acute Judgment as my Master, who daily convinced me of a thousand faults in my self, whereof I had not the least perception before, and which among us would never be numbered even among human Infirmities, I had likewise learned from his Example an utter Detestation of all Falsehood or Disguise; and Truth appeared so amiable to me, that I determined upon sacrificing everything to it.” (swift 237).

Gulliver has finally chosen a race of horses over his family essentially and England, but this is done by Swift to not encourage happiness through a Houyhnhnms type of lifestyle, but to demonstrate the error of prejudice over all types of the lifestyles presented throughout the novel. Here Gulliver who has not favored the previous travels witch involved different versions of people such as the giants or the miniature people, and instead choose horse (which he still first believed to be magician humans). Gulliver who was adequately emerging himself into a society and culture he clearly as stated above was in full support of, was kicked out because his native culture was seen to be too similar to the ‘yahoos’ especially his physical appearance, and kicked out. No matter which culture he went to Gulliver was never able to fit in and I think the larger message that could also be presented is that the current societies at the time that this was written made it impossible for anyone to fit in. In England you had all these scholars and authors competing for knowledge and presenting it but if you didn’t fit the mold you were exiled from society in a way or found yourself wanting to leave to somewhere better much like Gulliver. This quote also demonstrates the possible theme of the error in Human Understanding. Gulliver has fallen in love with a society that has no regard for the individual or feelings, their interchangeable nature at times seems almost scary. They have lost their sense of self at the cost of providing for the over all good. Through this theme and juxtaposition of firstly Gulliver’s admiration for the Houyhnhnms and then his forced exile from their society due to miniscule similarities to Yahoos, demonstrates the error of each type of extreme society and by placing values too much value into something can be harmful.

-Haley H.

Iron Maiden and Romantic Poetry

When listening to Iron Maidens heavy metal version of Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s “The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner” the first thing I notice is the tone of the speaker and the similarity of to Romantic Poetry. In Romantic Poetry it seems that emotion or experiences is meant to be expressed over actually just simply stating something and so the tone in Iron Maidens brings to life the feeling of Coleridges poem. It’s crazy and kind of scary but it also doesn’t need as much words to explain which is why he does a brief introduction and then lots of guitar music. You can feel rather than rely on actual words of the chaotic song which ties into the poem such as

“And now the STORM-BLAST came, and he

Was tyrannous and strong:

He struck with his o’ertaking wings,

And chased us south along.


With sloping masts and dipping prow,

As who pursued with yell and blow

Still treads the shadow of his foe,

And forward bends his head,

The ship drove fast, loud roared the blast,

And southward aye we fled.”


The song is causing the audience to truly feel the chase and really helps to bring to not necessarily life but feeling of this chase.  The length of the song as well really portrays as well the epic and almost spiritual ties in nature, the song really captures the nature and ambiance of the poem.  Especially at the tone shift at around 5 minutes into the song when it goes from super fast and heavy music to slow and dream like and you can hear the creaking of what most likely is the shape. The voice is sage like and it adds to the effectiveness of capturing the romanticist qualities of the original poem because the music alone is capturing the melancholy and appreaciation of the natural ocean settting before restarting the song but this time in a different almost upbeat tone compared to the creepy beginning. The silence is more impactful than the actual words which makes the song more effective and tie into the idea of romantic poetry. This also captures the Romantic qualities of the supernatural with the eerie sounds and feelings of being chased. The words in the actual poem by Coleridge are conveying this through flow like words and descriptive words such as

“With sloping masts and dipping prow,

As who pursued with yell and blow

Still treads the shadow of his foe,”

Really conveying the eerie supernatural factor that Iron Maiden really plays up throughout the song. The ‘shadow of his foe’ is creepy and most likely unwanted. Especially since this has all started as an initial tale by a creepy old man at a wedding and even as you read the actual poem the person who was grabbed was probably thinking ‘omg when will this story end’ and even while listening to the song by Iron Maiden I think at times the audience at some points are thinking the same thing. The ships going fast as they are trace by something yelling is the vivid imagery that can be enhanced by Iron Maidens quick and fast beat song. The calmness before this also juxtaposes the chaos that comes after and I think that really ties into the songs transitional shift where it gets calmer as well. Thus also adding to the eerie supernatural feel as everything seems to be calm but in the song odd noises are heard with a creepy narrator and in the poem odd things are described.



-Haley Halsey

The bigger Picture in Equiano’s narrative

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In the picture above the first thing that catches the reader’s eye is the quaker looking man holding a picture directly into the telescope which is directed at a merry black tribe. Beneath that picture is a man that seems to be in charge of picking out the pictures for ‘Negro Slavery’. The contradictory nature  of a quaker holding a picture of slaves being between paralleled with a nice calm looking village (even the weather is calmers and brighter over there), demonstrates a pro-slavery propaganda type of picture. As the quakers are holding their anti-slavery posters (they disagree with slavery) there are poor Irishmen and children on the streets. This Quaker holding the large sign in the middle saying “buy only West India Company Sugar” but also has a ‘East India Company’ tag in his back pocket also indicates he may be payed off and dishonest. The point of this picture may be to demonstrate that those who are against slavery are a bunch of hypocrites because as they preach to have anti-slavery they have white men on the streets (although Irish) and their children signing forms probably against their will. This relates to Olaudah Equiano’s narrative when ‘Equiano’ states

“ I was so enraged with the Governor, that I could have wished to have seen him tied fast to a tree and flogged for his behaviour; but I had not people enough to cope with his party. I therefore thought of a stratagem to appease the riot. Recollecting a passage I had read in the life of Columbus, when he was amongst the Indians in Mexico or Peru, where, on some occasion, he frightened them, by telling them of certain events in the heavens, I had recourse to the same expedient; and it succeeded beyond my most sanguine expectations. When I had formed my determination, I went in the midst of them; and, taking hold of the Governor, I pointed up to the heavens. I menaced him and the rest: I told them God lived there, and that he was angry with them, and they must not quarrel so; that they were all brothers, and if they did not leave off, and go away quietly, I would take the book (pointing to the Bible), read, and tell God to make them dead. This was something like magic. The clamour immediately ceased, and I gave them some rum and a few other things; after which they went away peaceably; and the Governor afterwards gave our neighbour, who was called Captain Plasmyah, his hat again.” (Equiano 2875).

This demonstrates that while Equiano may be scrutinizing the whites for their position on slavery and they treat him, he too also is focusing too much on the smaller picture than the larger one. In this case Equiano is trying so hard to be like the British (mentioning someone they would know of and talking sophisticatedly while tricking people)  that he fails to see he too does everything he hates. Right before this passage he went to help pick out slaves from his village, choosing the ones from his village because they ‘would’ be the best workers, although he just sentenced them to be slaves. The point being in both of these scenarios the person being depicted is failing to see their part in helping the encourage slavery and not abolish it.


-Haley H.

Sophia the Pretentious

In Phebe Gibbes’s Hartley House, Sophia often utilizes references to works from authors such as Dryden and Milton to demonstrate her ‘English Class’. In the book I think that Sophia utilizes the allusions or references to great english works so that she can brag about how much ‘cooler’ she is than her dear friend Arabella. Sophia in one of her many letters stated “But perhaps, instead of thinking yourself obliged to me, you will, with true European sangiford, suspect me of self- gratification in my descriptions; beware, however, of such erroneous conclusions, as you value the future favors of your own…” (Gibbs, p.14). This quote demonstrates sophia need to brag and show off to her friend how much class and cultured she is. The author does this in order to illuminate the obsessiveness the English had with their own cultural class hierarchy and to also offer a satirical analysis of the way in which the english language was used in such a complicated way to demonstrate ‘intelligence’ and along with that, ‘class’. Her reference to Dryden also emphasizes this in that Dryden was known for his admiration of the english language  so much so that he wrote The Indian Emperor, in closed couplets and iambic pentameters in a true heroic drama style. Although written in fancy English, Drydens drama is hard to follow and not easy for the average person to understand, even at that time in period. This is significant because although he is trying to uplift the english language, he is essentially uplifting nonsense. Ironically the more complicated and rare your diction and complex sentence structure was, the more intelligent you sounded which lead to a superiority complex and class distinction; even Sophia relies heavy on her cultured references and large amount of words to brag to her friend Arabella to demonstrate to Arabella how high society she is and to the reader how immature and spoiled she is.

The English Language

The status of the English Language changed dramatically from Samuel Johnsons Dictionary (1755) to Macaulay’s and Ray’s call for English education in India. The value and English pride did not drastically change though. In Maculays minute he says “All parties seem to be agreed on one point, that the dialects commonly spoken among the natives of this part of India contain neither literary nor scientific information, and are moreover so poor and rude that, until they are enriched from some other quarter, it will not be easy to translate any valuable work into them.  It seems to be admitted on all sides, that the intellectual improvement of those classes of the people who have the means of pursuing higher studies can at present be affected only by means of some language not vernacular amongst them.”, demonstrating that he still prides English as being superior intellectually. In Samuel Johnsons Dictionary though, Johnson does not necessarily pride English in the classical way unlike Macualay. Johnson utilized his book to attempt to reform the English language but instead put his personality onto the pages and realized that the English Language is constantly evolving. As seen in the video, the English language is constantly adapting so there is no way the language several years later would be exactly the same. The pride of the English Language did evolve to an enormity that was felt everywhere someone of the English Language went. In Maculays call for India to be taught in English he clearly is stating how grand the language is but when Johnson wrote the Dictionary, he himself may have even made up some of his own words in the book poking fun at the erratic language. So the respect of the language is what actually changed besides the literal evolution of the language over the years.  The actual style of languge spoken was also dramatically changed as well. In Johnsons preface to his dictionary he uses words that are not common or used in Maculay’s piece such as when Johnson states “I have, notwithstanding the discouragement, attempted a dictionary of the English Language, which, while it was employed in cultivation of every species of Literature, has itself been hitherto neglected…” . The language of Johnson had a feel more of wanting to sound sophisticated and important when it actually was not as well as also being hard to understand due to the chosen spelling of some of the words such as ‘notwithstanding’ .

The paradox of America



Mary Rowlandson’s life story confirms the history of intolerance and genocide central to the English colonization of Eastern North America. John Locke when discussing slavery first states “The natural liberty of man is to be free from any superior power on earth, and not to be under the will or legislative authority of men but to be ruled only by the law of nature.”, but he finishes his issues on slavery with “What I have been discussing is the condition of complete slavery, which is just a continuation of the state of war between a lawful conqueror and a captive. If they enter into any kind of pact—agreeing to limited power on the one side and obedience on the other—the state of war and slavery ceases for as long as the pact is in effect. For, as I have said, no man can by an agreement pass over to someone else something that he doesn’t himself have, namely a power over his own life.” This quote from Locke which is so vital because of his immense influence and role on colonization, is important because he begins with the natural rights people are born with but then finishes supporting slavery contradicting both ideas. I think demonstrates the contradicting attitudes people have about intolerance and genocide. Although we are against intolerance as a society there is always something we are intolerant about that we eventually come around to. Mary Rowlandson in her narrative refers to the Native Americans as savages and ruthless people but as soon as she gets to know them her dialect and observations cause the audience to notice the similarities between ‘savages’ and the colonizers. For example, the important women spend large amounts of time getting ready just like the high society women of class in the colonies or even back in Britain, the mother have endearing terms for the children, and they have their own customs and religion, as well as a democratic government amongst themselves in a way. At the time it was okay to see the Natives as this way because that’s how any ‘civilized’ society saw them, but now we regret the way we treat them because we realize the Native Americans were no different than us. This ties into John Locks quotes because to me, it seems that he is presenting the natural rights of people but also making it sound like he supports slavery, so he is essentially saying that slavery is okay and that to have slavery its not for the people we view as not having those rights. When Mary Rowlandson was captured she herself was not treated the way Locke describes true slavery, she learned the language, she was given a horse when she needed it, she became apart of them and that isn’t the formal definition of slavery Locke is describing. Because people have these rights we do need to accept them and most the time its hard for us to ignore them so we alter true forms of slavery. It’s also significant because I think this also demonstrates how we as a society has developed our attitudes toward slavery. We recognize these alienable rights and as we grow and become more and more accepting it gets harder and harder to have formal prejudices against anything. In our history we have over came prejudices with race, culture, sexual orientation and more and Locke and Rowlandson do a great job demonstrating just how we are prone to wanting to have prejudices but we also respect alienable rights and as we become more accepting we find something else to have prejudice against. To participate in Locke’s version of true slavery it would be against all the rights that the colonizers would eventually fight for so to me these examples just demonstrate the contradictory nature of prejudice in America.  This ties into the previous blog post because its so crucial to understand that America is supposed to be this “City upon the Hill’ and lead by example, but we are such a contradictory society that makes so many mistakes in regards to prejudice and genocide that it is truly ironic. America is symbolic of ‘freedom’ and ‘equality’ but it truly has always been limited to the majority with the people who are in some form different struggling to have the same recognized rights.

(still revising)