Inner Journey Essay.

Essay by marydHigh School, 12th gradeA+, October 2005

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Inner journeys involve the exploration of the self, as individuals review their growth and development in the light of experiences which challenge and inspire them. The inner journey has the power to challenge an individual's thinking. They provide new insights and understanding of the world and themselves.

Margaret Atwood's poem "Journey to the Interior" explores the dangers of an inner journey/ the individual becomes enlightened as to her own psyche/ compares the obstacles that face the traveller by relating the inner psyche with a physical map. Atwood charts her journey using a running metaphor of "a dotted line on a map", which establishes the comparison of a physical landscape with the metaphysical mindscape. In Stanza 1 we realise that inner travel can be dangerous, illustrated by imagery of the "cliff", while the "net of air" image hints at the uncertainty of travel into the psyche. Furthermore, this journey is difficult and uncharted shown by the metaphor indicating a "lack of reliable charts".

The listing of the debris of daily existences such as shoes and "a paring knife" symbolise the obstacles in the voyage of day to day life which confuse Atwood's line of thought. This confusion is also reflected by the non linear layout of the poem. Atwood has travelled into her psyche, causing her to realise the darkness in her own mind. This proves too dangerous and she retreats from further exploration with the pun "I must keep my head" and not go so far as to become insane like others.

Vittorio Sereni's "A Dream" is another poetic journey where one encounters inner obstacles, in the form of guilt, but in this case the traveller is unable to prevail/ is unable to progress /develop. Sereni takes an emotional journey into his past memory, but his guilt over...