Homework on “Once More to the Lake”
White says that he seemed to be living “a dual existence” as a father in the present and as a son in the remembered life of the past. Point to some moments when that dual existence seems most natural and to some when it seems more difficult to maintain. What seems to explain the differences to him and to you? Ans; Some of the moments when that dual existence seems most natural are when he got back there at the lake with his boy, he knew that lying in bed the first morning, smelling the bedroom, and hearing the boy sneak quietly out and go off along the shore in a boat were the exact thing happened to him when he was with his father and now the same thing happen with his little boy.
After that he began to sustain the illusion that he was I, and therefore, that he was his father. He seemed to be living a dual existence like he would be in the middle of some simple act, he would be picking up a bait box or laying down a table fork, or he would be saying something, and suddenly it would be not him but my father who was saying the words or making the gesture.
The difference between him and I are that if I went to the same lake that I used to go with my father and presently with my son, reminds me of childhood with my father. It takes me to my past and my father’s love.
What makes the thunderstorm a good episode with which to end the essay? What earlier themes does the moment collect and connect?
Ans: The thunderstorm makes a good episode on how that storm wraps up all his memory. It collects the revival of an old melodrama that he had seen long ago with childish awe. All those events in that thunderstorm was so familiar.