To Build a Fire Literary Analysis
Mother Nature is Always Stronger
than a Man's Strength
Human strength will never over come the strength of Mother Nature. In the short story To Build A fire, By, Jack London is the story of a man’s trek through the cold snow covered area of Yukon with his dog. This trek, being done in Yukon, is happening during a time where the temperatures are at some times 70 below 0. The conditions are deadly and the ground is covered in snow as far as the eye can see, and things aren’t looking up for this man and his pup. The man knew he had to make steady progress to get to where there was shelter. The conditions were making the progress of his trip delay by a lot. Water and snow has hit his skin and Mother Nature is striking hard. The man’s attempts to make a fire weren’t strong enough to counter the harsh temperature. His dog is walking slowly and has eyes of defeat. All hope has turned into ash. Beneath the snow that could be 3 inches deep or 3 feet deep there was some ice but then water, and any exposed skin to that water would be deadly. The snow above the water would usually be sunken in but not always, which would make it hard to see. Mother Natures skills were no match for the man and his dog. During the try the dog fall’s through into one of the water traps, here is a quote explaining it.
“Suddenly it broke through, floundered to one side, and got away to firmer footing. It had wet its forefeet and legs, and almost immediately the water that clung to it turned to ice. It made quick efforts to lick the ice off its legs, then dropped down in the snow and began to bite out the ice that had formed between the toes. This was a matter of instinct. To permit the ice to remain would mean sore feet. It did not know this. It merely obeyed the mysterious prompting that arose from the deep crypts of its being. But the man knew, having achieved a judgment on the subject, and he removed the mitten from his right hand and helped tear out the ice-particles. He did not expose his fingers more than a minute, and was astonished at the swift numbness that smote them. It certainly was cold. He pulled on the mitten hastily, and beat the hand savagely across his chest.”
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Mother Nature is a beautiful thing but it is also a very dangerous thing. Sadly this man and his dog were on the bad side and suffered a rather harsh time. The man’s mind wonders and he started to think of what would happen if he died and if the boys would find him the next day. He then nestles in to one of the most comfortable sleeps he has ever been in. The dog was surprised to see the man sitting in the snow without making a fire. The dog got up close to the man but scent death so it backed away. It then left the man and trotted long to where it knew the camp was, and where the boys where. Through out the whole story Mother Nature’s strength was striking hard on the man and his dog. It took the live of a man and almost the dogs. The mans perseverance and strength was strong but no match for Mother Nature’s. For the dog and the man, their bond and strength together was there but in the end were split. So, the next time you want to go out in sub degree temperatures I suggest going with more than just a dog or not going at all.