“The Blue Boquet” Analysis by Scholars Essay

Short-short stories have been critiqued by countless writers and every single critic has a different mentality about what needs to be in a short-short story to make it a memorable one. There have been countless authors that try to create a short-short story but at the end of the day for one reason or another, their story was not considered a short-short. Through the critiques of Alice K. Turner, Joyce Carol Oates, and Leonard Michaels one can see how the story, “The Blue Bouquet,” is able to be considered a true short-short story.

A “zinger” or “snap” is what Alice K. Turner believes every well made short-short needs to have as its ending. The end of the “The Blue Bouquet” has that “zinger”. One would not anticipate the man to just leave the town without telling the story of his eye, yet he does which makes the story have that final “zinger” needed, which makes it a memorable story to its readers. Turner says, “‘Well, damn! ’ I want to say at the end of a short-short, while figuratively slapping my thigh. Otherwise why not read something long enough to get your teeth into? The twist is seen at the end of the story when the man mentions how much he wants eye of the other man. Turner also has a mentality that only very few people can write gifted short stories, Turner says “Either (you’ve) got the knack or (you) haven’t. ” Joyce Carol Oates says, “The form is sometimes mythical, sometimes anecdotal, but it ends with a final sentence, often a final word. ”

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In “The Blue Bouquet” ends with a final sentence that leaves the reader a bit perplexed, but it abruptly ends the story. Paz writes, “The next day I left town. Oates (wrote about short-short-stories and) explains why and how they are often enjoyable to read due to the fact they are full of adrenaline. According too Oats, there is always, a sense of activity going on during the story. Throughout, “The Blue Bouquet,” Paz gives his audience a sense of worry; one example is, “I didn’t want to turn around, although I felt the shadow getting closer with every step. I tried to run. I couldn’t. Suddenly I stopped short. Before I could defend myself, I felt the point of a knife in my back and a sweet voice” (164).

A foreshadowing is seen in the beginning of the story as the man is warned not to wonder the streets at night, however; man does not listen to the suggestion and that’s how he almost lost his eye. Leonard Michaels mentions that a short-short story has the same characteristics of that to a poem. Michaels writes, “Short-short stories can seem to come very close to being poems …” The author, Octavio Paz, is a very famous Mexican poet. Due to the authors heritage one can imply that the setting of the short-short is based somewhere in Mexico or possibly another South American country due descriptions in, “The Blue Bouquet. Throughout the short-short, Paz, continuously mentions details of a shanty town with no street lights. Paz describes the setting of the poor town, “I jumped from my hammock and crossed the room barefoot, careful not to step on some scorpion leaving his hideout for a bit of fresh air. ”

By the description given, the town is obviously in a poor setting for there to be hammocks and scorpions. Also the majority of the population in South America and Central America has brown eyes. However; the eye stealer wants blue eyes, which were extremely hard to find in that country. The Blue Bouquet,” is a well written short-short story according to what the critics categorized short-short stories as in their essays. There was a “zinger” and the end which is what seems to most important to Turner. Meanwhile there was also a lot exciting context in the story which would allow the reader to be entertained. Although Paz is known for his creative work with poems, Paz created an excellent short-short with “The Blue Bouquet” that is able to be distinguished as a short-short and not as a poem.

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