narrator. Because readers assumed that these voices were the poet speaking directly of himself, Berryman's poetry was considered part of the Confessional poetry movement. Berryman, however, scorned the idea that he was a Confessional poet. “The Ball Poem” is a poem from The Dream Songs and was written in accordance to his – John Berryman’s, own life. This poem and each other individual poem is lyric and organized around an emotion provoked by an everyday event. “The Ball Poem” involves a “loss” believed to be his father, and also involves suicidal by drowning, in which Berryman attempted in his own act of suicidal.Summary of content and how related to the Area of Study topic In “The Ball Poem,” John Berryman tells about growing up by metaphorically comparing a ball to our childhood. A young child loses his ball; it bounces away and lands in the harbor. He is upset when he looks into the gloomy water because he cannot find the ball. This is when he gets his first sense of responsibility. John Berryman compares losing the ball to losing our childhood where the ball is our youth. The boundary which the boy encounters is growing up. When the poem says: “And no one buys a ball back” means that people can’t buy childhood and time. The past is gone and it will never come back. Another important aspect of this poem is how it connects to loss. As we grow older we experience more loss. Our pets, our grandparents, our parents, and eventually ourselves will die as we age. When the boy cannot find the ball, he must stand up to the loss: “He is learning, well behind his desperate eyes,/ The epistemology of loss, how to stand up/ Knowing what every man must one day know… I am not a little boy.” This quote illustrates how the boy must cross the boundary to grow up into a man. Playing with balls is a child’s game and when the ball is gone, he’s no longer a child and has crossed that boundary. He now bears “the epistemology of loss.” In “The Ball Poem”, Berryman tells us about how our childhood can quickly fly by, as quickly as a ball is lost, and how we sometimes unsuspectingly must grow up and face hardships, like loss. But in this situation, the loss leads to suicidal and the breakage of boundaries into freedom.Relationship to extracts of set texts “The Ball Poem” can be related to the story of “Melanie” introduction by Fiona Giles in that it portrays many of the aspects and themes in relation to “The Ball Poem”. The poem brings about the experience of loss and how to recover from this traumatic loss. The boy in the poem ultimately crosses the boundary into suicidal, similarly to Melanie. Although Melanie is also about the fear of growing up and crossing the boundary to adulthood, it also coincides with “The Ball Poem” of the boundary between life and death and that the ultimate step to cross the boundary is taken – suicidal. Melanie fears to cross the boundary of suicidal but has built this boundary to prevent crossing / avoiding crossing another boundary – adulthood. Language features and structures of the text used to convey ideas and information about The Area of StudyIn ‘The Ball Poem’, by contrast, the gradual, rather than sudden, return of light marks the end of the primary experience of loss. Loss, often associated with a feeling of transcendence, also unsettles the self, causing it to lose its strict boundaries. Thus, the poetic “I” in the poem can declare that “I am everywhere, / I suffer and move, my mind and my heart move / With all that move me, under the water / Or whistling”. The rhythmic movement of water, or of whistling in the poem creates an ambience for crossing boundaries, “ there it is in the water! / , under the water” , “A whistle blows / Or whistling”. Only one border cannot be re-passed, the boundary cutting off the boy’s loss from the present self. This notion is strengthened by the juxtaposition of continuous whistling with the single sharp sound of the whistle that signaled the regaining of consciousness and sealed the loss event. The fictional situation of the poem is ambiguous. It is possible that the speaker of the poem re-lives a childhood experience of loss, probably in a distorted/symbolic form; it is equally possible that he actually sees an event, a boy losing his ball, which evokes his own traumatic loss. While the “I” of the poem identifies with the boy’s experience, he asserts at the end of the poem that “I am not a little boy.” The opening question, “What is the boy now […]?”, clearly indicates that the boyhood self is also lost/ crosses the boundary, as a consequence of the experienced loss of a love-object. The lyric “I” differs from the boy of the poem in that it certainly experiences some kind of a repetition recorded in and/or brought about by the poem. But then in the penultimate line above there is the personal pronoun “me,” the boy and the narrator seem to merge: I am everywhere, I suffer and move, my mind and my heart move/ With all that move me, under the water/ Or whistling, I am not a little boy. In a way it seems as if the ‘epistemology of loss’ did not succeed in teaching the subject(s) of the poem “how to stand up,” since a part of the subject(s) “will explore the deep and dark / Floor of the harbour,” which can be seen as a figure of suicide by drowning, “under the water”. If one goes along with this assumption, there is, however, still the question of which part of the “me” it is that drowns. Could it be that the part that drowns is the one infested with loss and that the drowning of this part is a form of escape from the bonds of loss of the other subject(s)? “The Ball Poem” could be seen as a poem about loss, about suffering death, and about finding one’s way in the face of self-destruction and breaking the boundary into freedom.How this text has developed my understanding of the Area of StudyThe text of “The Ball Poem” has developed my understanding of ‘Crossing Boundaries’ through the conveyance of loss and that loss can trigger many forms of overcoming boundaries. Though this poem’s ultimate crossing was suicidal, other forms to overcome loss may be growing up.