The Quest of the Silver Fleece



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Examples paragraphs (short answer) for “The Quest of the Silver Fleece”



The author establishes the mood of the story by using sounds. At the beginning of the story the mood is ominous. The author describes a dark night in the swamp, and adds to the spooky mood by having the boy hear a “great shadowy bird that is “murmuring.” Then, the boy hears music that makes the boy feel “impelled by some strange power.” This changes the mood to suspenseful, because the boy and the reader want to know what that “sweet music” is. Sometimes writers describe sounds that change both the actions of the characters and the overall mood of the story.



The music changes the way the boy feels. Before hears the music, the boy is feeling scared and lonely. In paragraph 3, it says, “he was alone in the empty night was closing all about him here in a strange land, and he was afraid.” However, things change when the boy suddenly hears music. This music makes him feel curious, and he begins to forget he is afraid. He becomes “impelled by some strange power…following the song hungrily and half forgetting his fear.” Sometimes music has the power to change people’s moods.

  1. Example Paragraph (Short Answer) for the poem “Home”

The speaker’s changing perception of the setting affects the way the speaker feels over the course of the poem. At first the speaker seems at ease with coming home to his little room. Even though he is by himself, he refers to his room as “comfortable gloom.” It may be late and it may be gloomy, but he still says he is comfortable. However, as soon as he thinks he sees a woman in the chair and soon realizes “there was no one there.” He has trouble sleeping and his “comfortable gloom” changes to “lonely gloom.” Sometimes people are content or accepting of their loneliness until they are reminded they do not have company.

Compare/Contrast Essay for “The Quest of the Silver Fleece” / “Home”

The main character in “The Quest of the Silver Fleece” by W.E.B. DuBois and the speaker of the poem “Home” by Rupert Brooke both experience initial feels that change over time. Both of them have mysterious and unexpected things happen to them that make their emotions change.

In “The Quest of the Silver Fleece,” the boy is thinking of his family back at home and how they were probably now sitting down to dinner. He thinks of his parents and pets and is saddened that “they would never be as near as once they had been.” He cries and is very lonely. It says, “he had never dreamed of the world as lonely before…” His feelings change when he hears the music, because rather than being scared, he becomes curious and “impelled.” He is attracted to the music and wants to find out where it is coming from. He even becomes less scared.

When the speaker of “Home” returns to his small room, he refers to his home as “comfortable gloom.” He seems used to the gloom in his life and it does not bother him. However, when the firelight plays tricks with his eyes and he thinks he sees a woman in his chair and realizes it was just an illusion, it almost seems as if he really wants a visitor. He no longer is comfortable with being by himself. Instead, he refers to it as “lonely gloom.”

In both the story and the poem, the main characters think that they are happy with what is happening in their lives, but after things happen it looks as if they both want to change their situations. The boy in “The Quest of the Silver Fleece” leaves home for school, and never thought the world would end up being this lonely. He does not get far when he hears the music, and when instead of going forth on his journey, he leaves the highway and returns to find a cabin. He “Half forgets his fear” and “creeps closer.” In the poem “Home,” the main character refers to his situation of being by himself as comfortable. Once he realizes the woman he thought was in his chair is not real, he starts to feel lonely. He is having trouble sleeping and even speaks out to the “Happy” people. These characters’ (plural) feelings change from individuals who seem to be content until something happens to change their feelings.



The boy in the poem and the speaker of the poem seem to crave social interaction. Sometimes people can feel very independent and as if what they chose is the right choice and they can do things by themselves. People are social animals, and they enjoy company. We are all attracted to others. It can be scary and lonely to spend a great deal of time on one’s own. Finding others to share things with can be very comforting and enjoyable.

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