The unrecognized ending of Cannery Row.
In John Steinbeck's novel, Cannery Row, Steinbeck attempts to display various themes, all the while focusing on bringing the row itself to life. He focuses on expressing his philosophy regarding business, regarding sense of family, regarding the consequences of seemingly harm acts, and regarding how to achieve true happiness. Yet, despite these various goals, Steinbeck manages to fit in rare forms of art. If such art is not his own handwriting, it is that of others. In chapters thirty and thirty two, Steinbeck includes Black Marigolds, a translated extract from the Sanskrit, written by Chauras, a young Kashmiri poet. In both chapters, the poem planes very different roles. While in chapter thirty, the poem acts as a pleasantry for Doc to read to his guest, in chapter thirty two the poem reflects on Cannery Row itself, and the story that Steinbeck has narrated about it. (145 words; 7 sentences).
In chapter thirty, Black Marigolds is simply regarded as an enjoyable reading which Doc recounts aloud to his guest. The poem, in its original form in the Sanskrit, was written by Chauras, a young Kashmiri poet. Imprisoned as a teenager for having a secret affair with the daughter of the Indian King, the poem reflects his mourning and desire for "his girl". However, after being translated into the form in which it is read in Cannery Row, the poem is not much more than a mere love poem that brings tears to the eyes of Doc's invitees. In the third stanza, Chauras addresses the distance separating the two lovers, and refers to it as a sickness, a fever. The fact that he alludes to their separation as a disease shows the pain that he feels when not with his partner, a mental pain so strong that it could very well be physical. In the fifth stanza, he goes on to say,.
"Death sends me the flickering of powdery lids.
Over wild eyes and the pity of her slim body .
All broken up with the weariness of joy;.