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In Passing By Arthur Yap - What is your impression of the visitor and the hosts in the poem?

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In Passing By Arthur Yap (a) What is your impression of the visitor and the hosts in the poem? From this poem, I can tell that the visitor was an avid traveler, and had been to many places in the world. He was born in New York, and has visited Italy, K.L, Singapore and many other places, proving him to be very well-traveled. "Yesterday you were at k.l, the day before you were somewhere else, now you are here". Having been to three different states in a matter of three days, it is evident that the visitor enjoyed traveling, and was a very hurried man. The host described him as being "somewhere else" the day before, because this globe-trotter went to so many places, that even his friends or relatives could not keep track of where he went, or where he was. His hurried and hasty nature led to him being very abrupt and aloof. As he was constantly pressed for time, he did not take care in refining his conversation so that it included elaboration and clarity. ...read more.


They were also very hospitable and brought the visitor to Chinatown, where he exclaimed that "it was all so intriguing". The hosts respected the visitor, and left him to his intrigue, "not wanting to be perfunctory". The hosts were also very polite and gave him all the attention whilst he was in Singapore. They brought him to places of interest and elaborate eateries although they were not very close. Being the affable hosts at the airport, they continued "talking and talking" to the visitor, trying to strike a conversation. However, he was too caught up in his own affairs to even bother responding, nor commenting on the airport, which was supposed to be one of the best in the world. (b) How does the poet convey the restlessness of the modern world? The poet conveys the restlessness of the modern world mainly in three ways: firstly, by the title itself, secondly, haphazard structure of the poem, and lastly through the hectic ways of the visitor. At the end of the day, it brings out that the world in this day and age is never still and forever bustling with changes. ...read more.


In this way, the world can be considered getting smaller and even more restless with the advance in technology. One classic example is the visitor in the poem. "Yesterday you were at k.l, the day before you were somewhere else, now, you are here..." This reveals the fast pace of life and how hurried one can get. Like the visitor, each day is spent in a different place, but all still too hasty. Even in verbal speech, everything appears so abrupt and hurried. For instance, when the visitor commented about the Singapore specialties saying "it's so unlike the spaghetti I had in Italy", his words seemed so simple, short and sweet but was quite deep if read between the lines. In the airport, the visitor too, was caught up in preparing for his next flight that he did not even bother talking to the visitors for one last time. By writing the poem in 2nd person, with all the "you"s, the poet incorporates a lot of reader participation. This enables the reader to relate even more to the restlessness of the modern world as he / she virtually becomes the visitor, taking the stand of the visitor and "experiences" what he has gone through. ...read more.

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