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"The things worth writing about, and the things worth reading about, are the things that feel almost beyond description at the start and are, because of that, frightening."
Description hooks the reader. That has been proven true in the anti-war novel, All Quiet on the Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque. Erich Maria Remarque especially adds interest when explaining the warfare and the preparations for it.
You really get a sense of how awful the conditions were for the fighting soldiers, and that is due to description. When the soldiers are in the midst of gunfire, they take a second to realize the sensations they feel.
The air becomes acrid with the smoke of the guns and the fog. The fumes of powder taste bitter on the tongue. The roar of the guns makes our lorry stagger, the reverberation rolls raging away to the rear, everything quakes. Our faces change imperceptibly.
Not only does description in All Quiet on the Western Front add interest to the reader, but it also paints a better picture in their head. The vividness of the thing Ms. Remarque is describing, is done with the amount of description put in.
In All Quiet on the Western Front, there is tons of raw emotions that make you empathize for the soldiers. It is a great novel for anyone who enjoys raw human feelings in times of danger.
"I take out my cigarettes, break each one in half and give them to the Russians. They bow to me and then light the cigarettes." All Quiet on the Western Front, Chapter 8
The great gift of human beings is that we have the power of empathy. In chapter 8 of All Quiet on the Western Front, Paul is full of empathy towards the Russian soldiers. Empathy is something that you cannot control. It is a gift that makes people sympathize and help out others in need. In chapter 8 of All Quiet on the Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque, Paul experiences empathy in a great way. When Russian soldiers are prisoners of German camps, Paul feels bad for them, as any normal human would. During Paul's shift of watching the prisoners, he does something that would make other German soldiers angry.
I take out my cigarettes, break each one in half and give them to the Russians. They bow to me and then light the cigarettes. Now red points glow in every face. They comfort me; it looks as though there were little windows in dark village cottages saying that behind them are rooms full of peace. All Quiet on the Western Front, Chapter 8
This quote shows that just because you are fighting against someone, you can also be nice. Paul sees the poor state of the soldiers and wants to make their lives better. he feels empathetic. His empathy turns the mood of the Russian's around. Paul feels especially empathetic towards the soldiers because it might be him in their situation later on in the war. Treat others the way you would like to be treated is a common saying and Paul had that saying in mind when he handed the Russian's the cigarette.
8th Grade English
"Permanence, perseverance, and persistence in spite of all obstacles, discouragements, and impossibilities: It is this that in all things distinguish the strong soul from the weak."
My eyes were going down the page but my mind could not catch up. While reading the Odyssey, I found myself reading sections of the book, and then looking back without knowing what I just read. It was tough for me, especially at the beginning. I think Tom Sawyer was a good intro book to the Odyssey because of the tough language, but I don't think anything can really prepare you for reading a big book like the Odyssey for the first time. The Odyssey has been the toughest book I have read so far in my young-adult life. I must admit that parts of the book were not particularly interesting to me, making it harder to focus. It took perseverance to get through each chapter. I found it very rewarding when I would persevere through a chapter that was challenging for me.
Walter Elliot once said, "Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other." I thought that to be the case while reading each chapter in the Odyssey. The third chapter was the first one that I read alone. It was a big step for me, and while reading it, I did not think I was up for the challenge. I couldn't even get through one page, look back, and remember what I just read. The greek names were just too much to remember. And on top of all of that, I had to note-take and highlight on every page. I was thinking of taking the easy way out. But, Instead of just giving up and reading the chapter summary, I persevered through the rest of the book. It felt great to accomplish something I didn't know I could. After persevering through the first book, I found it easier to do the same for the rest of the chapters.
From reading the Odyssey, I learned that perseverance always pays-out in the end. Also, I learned that the more one might persevere, the easier it will come to them in the future. "A dream doesn't become reality through magic; It takes sweat, determination, and hard work." -Colin Powell. If you want to achieve greatness in life, then put in the work yourself because greatness will not come from taking the easy way out.
It is important to have perseverance in life because at one point or another, you will have challenges to overcome. You will need perseverance to overcome those challenges. But, perseverance does not just come over somebody. It is a trait that people may build overtime by hard work and determination. That is why I try to take the easy way out as little as possible. That is my advice to myself, and everyone else who is looking to achieve greatness.
I have been encouraged by my family and classmates to improve my Guitar playing. This past term in Fenn, I took beginning guitar as my Art class. At first, I took the class to get an "Easy A." After a few weeks, it was more than that. I developed a passion for it. I was good at it too. Though, after beginning guitar ended, I did not feel the same drive to play and practice as I did before. My mom saw my talent and was insistent of me practicing. Once I was not being rewarded for my efforts, (getting a good grade in guitar) I did not want to play. Then my mom made me realize that not everyone has a talent in everything. And if you find something that you are good at, stick with it, because others do not have the same chance. That was a very god point that my mother made and it inspired me to keep with the guitar. Now, I can fluently play several different songs and counting! I am glad that my mom taught me that valuable lesson. And who knows? I may be a musician one day and I have my mom to thank for that.
"Let us step into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure."
Everything was good in my life. I was on the JV lacrosse team and I was in the middle of a great academic term. Also, it was almost the end of the year and I was excited for summer. There was no reason for change in my life. But, one fateful Friday morning, things would change.
Mr. Bevis, head of the varsity lacrosse team, called me over to talk to him. He informed me that varsity lacrosse had a game that day and they were missing some players. So, he asked me if I wanted to play. I was overjoyed with the opportunity of "playing up." A couple of colleagues of mine also on the JV squad were called up as well. Though this was a change in an almost perfect time for me, I was excited for the challenge, the chance to prove myself.
Throughout the rest of the day, varsity lacrosse players kept coming up to me with the news that I was playing for them. They all told me that playing on varsity lacrosse is a big step-up and I need to be prepared. Both mentally, and physically. Believe it or not, that really helped me realize the importance of the game I was about to play.
The first couple of quarters were not very eventful for me, even when I was in the game. The coach puts me in for the third time at the beginning of the 4th quarter, tied at six. When I get on offense, the ball is passed to me. At that moment I see one of my teammates cutting through the middle, wide open. I throw him the ball and it hits him right in his pocket. He quickly releases a well-placed low corner shot and scores. It felt great to do something to help the team, even though I did not score. As I went back to the bench, I was getting high fives from everyone. It felt great. The coach then came up to me and congratulated me on my great assist. That is when I realized that accepting a challenge is a very brave thing to do. And in most cases, it usually pays off.
We ran down the court at lightning speeds, hoping for a miracle. My AAU basketball team was a finalist for the division two state finals. It was a very big deal to say the least. My team was losing in the 4th quarter by about 25 points. But, we did not give up. One of my best friends was on the team as well. His name was Nate. Nate and I had great chemistry on and off the court so our coach always put us in together. He did the same thing in that 4th quarter. With the help of Nate and I, we were closing the gap. I would get a rebound and quickly outlet it to Nate. He would run up the floor and make a bounce pass to a teammate, hit me as a trailer, or take it himself. That was what was working for us. Though in the end, there was just not enough time. Instead of everyone getting down, Nate told the team that we all played our hearts out in that 4th quarter and for that, we should be congratulated. That made everyone feel better. That was the thing I liked most about Nate. He always looked at the positives in life.
Nate always used to say, "There are two types of people in this world. Glass half empty or glass half full." Nate was definitely glass half full and that made it easy for me to be friends with him because he was always in a good mood. Nate was my best friend from grades 2-5. Unfortunately after that, we started to drift apart.
Having a friend like Nate is important. He shows you that life is short, why spend it being sad. I wish I was still in-touch with Nate but life goes on as he taught me. Nate is a great kid and will change many people's lives. He may even win a nobel prize!