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How do you respond to the work? "Junior Year Abroad" by Luisa Lopez

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Stephanie Rowan Prof. Best November 22, 2005 Intro to Poetry How do you respond to the work? Reading the poem "Junior Year Abroad" by Luisa Lopez was like a flashback to a memory I did not want to recollect. It's about a young woman living in Paris for her Junior year and breaking a promise she had once made. She left a loved one back at home and while living in Paris, met someone new and the feelings she once had for her first lover, dissipated. This old lover comes to visit her for Christmas and her attitude towards him shows change; change of personality. Her dreams defined what her mind could not establish. Those dreams were the only freedom she had to express how she felt inside a trapped memory. I spent my freshman year of college in Madrid, Spain: it was quite an experience, and in living there I met the first love of my life: Amin. ...read more.


(Lopez 59) She calls him "the invited man" meaning, she had once loved him and invited him into her life. But her tone changes when she said that he was "beside me not knowing I didn't love him anymore," he doesn't know that her feelings changed. It is very lonesome to wake up next to someone that you don't love, anymore. Even before waking up, before laying in bed with that unwanted man, she fell asleep and dreamt: "betrayal, the snake under the evergreen, threw me into nightmares of floods and dying birds." (Lopez 59) That snake can symbolize sin, like offering temptation but leading to nightmares. Mares of floods and birds facing death represent a morbidity in her tone. She almost makes the feeling of love, seem horrible and deadly. "In Paris I concede: deceiving my old lover, the one now stirring in his sleep is even more dangerous..." ...read more.


"He made a journey. I offered a welcome. Why should he give me up?" (Lopez 60) She fell for him, she offered herself to him. He went all the way to see her, so then why would he give her up? Does she want him to continue pursuing her? The author, by using a rhetorical question, allows the reader to come up with their own ending for a story such as this. Love is really difficult to explain, and since I am so young, and so inexperienced - there is not much I can say about it. The narrator in Luisa Lopez' "Junior Year Abroad" played the game of love and with a break in between, she was able to find what she really wanted, and it didn't include her old lover. My response to this poem is done through a similar personal experience as the narrator and therefore, I may relate to her nostalgic and morbid thoughts during the process of change in emotion. ...read more.

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