The Heavy Bear Who Goes With Me
Alcohol, probable the oldest drug known, has been used since the earliest of societies for celebration, rituals, and other social situations. In the early 1920 s society viewed alcohol as more of a social problem, and the 18th amendment was passed to outlaw the consumption, sell, or trade of alcohol. This action caused much more misconduct, due to gangsters, and other organized crimes against the government. Prohibition was abolished with the 21st amendment in 1933. The poem The Heavy Bear Who Goes With Me was written only a few years after prohibition and reflects the true nature of alcoholism. Although alcoholism was still frowned upon on this era, so Schwartz uses a bear as a persona to reflect himself. In the last stanza, The secret life of belly and bone shows that Schwartz feels alcoholism is still unacceptable behavior. Schwartz uses physical, emotional, and psychological as aspects of a bear to explain the nature of alcoholism.
Schwartz gives the bear human characteristics that would be true of an alcoholic, Clumsy and lumbering here and there and In love with candy, anger, and sleep . Much like a bear, a person who is an alcoholic may experience great deal of difficulty keeping his/her balance or controlling their emotions. He furthers this metaphor of an alcoholic by showing a physical dependence, Trembles and shows the darkness beneath . Due to withdrawal, an alcoholic may wake up in the morning with tremors and distress that require a drink for relief. The author is eager to engulf his physical need, A manifold honey to smear on his face . This strong need for alcohol outweighs what a person knows and understands about the effect on the body. Schwartz conveys to his readers that alcoholism in an inevitable burden, he tells us the bear is That inescapable animal walks with me, Moves where I move, distorting my gesture . It is apparent that Schwartz feels that alcoholism is bearish.
Conflicts with culture may make it difficult for some people to develop their own stable attitudes and moderate patterns of drinking. The strutting show-off is terrified, dressed in his dress-suit An alcoholic may feel using alcohol as a way to change moods or to be sociable. Schwartz shows this is a very unhealthy connection to drinking. The bear, Howls in his sleep because of the tight-rope , this line explains the emotional hold alcohol has over the writer.