The Turning Point in My Life Essay
491 Words2 Pages
I was in my final year at high-school. I was only seventeen and the pressure of knowing that the outcome of school results would determine my whole life ahead finally got to me. I snapped. One day, in the absence of my parents, I ran away from home, hoping never to return. This was the turning point in my life.
With an incomplete education on one hand, I was a lost soul, unaware of what to do or where to go. I ran into a group of people who claimed they could assist me out of this dark web I was now tangled in. They introduced me to drugs. Dosed with pills of heroin and cocaine, my life was tumbling downhill like a snowball, only gathering wrong as it rolled. It was those times where I was not…show more content…
It was only a matter of time before I was caught and sentenced to nineteen years of imprisonment.
The words of Gregory David Roberts described my situation as I felt it- “I was a revolutionary who lost his ideals in heroin, a philosopher who lost his integrity in crime and a poet who lost his soul in a maximum-security prison.” Two years in jail and I escaped in broad daylight and took asylum in the jhopadis of Dharavi in Mumbai. I got involved in the mafia and started a business of smuggling guns and ammunition and counterfeiting money. The money I earned was enough to pay off any heart fancying a call to the police. I was a notoriously known figure now, and probably the most wanted person in the whole of the country. Everyday I met new people interested in my business. One day to my surprise a female entrepreneur came to my “office.” She was gorgeous and from the moment I set my eyes on her I fell in love with her. She helped my business for six months and became a close part of my life until finally she betrayed me to the police. It seemed she was involved with them and did this for a sum of money. I was imprisoned again. It was here that I was chained beaten, stabbed and starved. I was at constant war with myself. Should I have done what I did? But it did not matter now. My companions lost sanity while I kept my nerve. I buried them and their lives into my own
Hamlet's constant brooding about death and humanity comes to a (grotesque) head in the infamous graveyard scene, where Hamlet holds up the unearthed skull of Yorick, a court jester Hamlet knew and loved as a young boy. The skull itself is a physical reminder of the finality of death. After all of Hamlet's brooding and philosophical contemplation of mortality, Hamlet literally looks death directly in the face right here.
As you can probably guess, it's a turning point for Hamlet. He thinks about the commonness of death and the vanity of life. He not only remembers Yorick, a mere jester, but also considers what's become of the body that belonged to Alexander the Great. Both men, concludes Hamlet, meet the same end and "returneth into dust" (5.1.217). Morbid? Sure. But it also seems like a new, more mature acceptance of a common human fate. He may be contemplative, but he's not melodramatically contemplating suicide or anything.
Act Your Age
There's also a weird part in this scene where Hamlet all of sudden appears to be a lot older than we thought. When the play begins, Hamlet is a university student, which means he's pretty young. By the time Hamlet makes it to the graveyard in Act V, he's apparently thirty years old (much older than the average university student). The evidence? The First Clown says he's been a gravedigger in Elsinore since "the very day that young Hamlet was born" (5.1.152-153) and a few lines later he reveals that he's been a "sexton" in Denmark for "thirty years" (i.e. working at the church and graveyard) (5.1.167).
Sure, maybe Shakespeare just messed things up. It happens. But it wouldn't surprise us if Hamlet literally aged between Act I and Act V —perhaps it's a reflection of his new, more mature outlook on life and death.
One more thing: In this scene, the graveyard is specifically opposed to the royal court, and not just because of the dirt and bones and all. In Act I the court is a place where Hamlet's told to "not for ever with they vailèd lids/ Seek for thy noble father in the dust" (1.2.72-73) and reminded that "your father lost a father,/ That father lost, lost his" (1.2.93-94): in other words, there's no time to remember the dead. People die; get over it; move on.
But not in the graveyard. In the graveyard, Hamlet's allowed to remember the dead. "Alas, poor Yorick," says Hamlet, as he recalls that Yorick was "a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy," one who "hath borne [Hamlet] on his back a thousand times" (5.1.190-191; 191-192; 192-193).
So, Hamlet encounters the skull of a man who worked for his father and who Hamlet knew as a child. He remembers his childhood as a happy time in which Old Hamlet was alive and all was well in the world. All this happiness, of course, is disrupted when Hamlet realizes Ophelia (now dead) is being buried a few gravestones over.
We'll let you handle that one on your own.