A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings Essay

Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s short story is a popular topic for many language arts classes. A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings is a beautiful piece of magical realism about an old man who washes up on the shore of a small seaside community. The people of the community do not know what to do with the smelly old man who happens to have feathered wings on his back. Instead of treating this old man with respect, they cage him and turn him into a side show feature. The family that takes him in makes a lot of money off of his misfortune and unusual appearance.

Twists and Turns

This short story makes for an interesting essay because the story has so many interesting twists and turns to analyze. As the old man goes through a subtle transformation as he sits in his cage and oddly, another side show act shows up to steal the old man’s thunder. This little seaside community is a very unusual place.

Odd Characters and Behaviors

The short story has unusual characters who have odd behaviors. There is a child in the story and this child becomes rather close to the old man. The adults are not able to see the same things that the child sees, but this is common in most literature. The child and the old man are quite endearing characters who are difficult to forget.

Excellent Ending for Interpretations

The ending of the story also provides excellent fodder for essays. Without giving away the ending, readers discover that there are many ways to interpret the magically realistic way that Garcia-Marquez decides to end the story. The entire story is practically unforgettable. If you have ever read any other pieces by this author, they often complement each other - especially if your essay is analyzing the magical realism that Garcia Marquez uses in practically all of his writings.

Discuss Magical Realism

The magical realism also makes for an interesting topic for essays. Many professors will ask students to discuss the quality of magical realism and then show how they exist in this amazing short story. From the old man to the side show acts to the crabs that are being thrown into the ocean, this story has some incredibly vivid characters and scenes, which lend themselves to fodder for magical realism essays.

Once you have read A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings, you will quickly understand why so many people love this short story.