The Things They Carried
Tim O'Brien's “The Things They Carried” is a story about the soldiers marching through Vietnam. He describes what Lieutenant Cross and his soldiers carried during the war and what those things represented for each soldier. The thing they carried shows the personality of each soldier. These things represented the life and the personality of each soldier. “The things they carried were largely determined by necessity”(O'Brien 99). This was a baggage full of physical and psychological items. The psychological items were guilt, memories, feelings, relief and fear. The physical items were war necessities,good luck and significant items.
Lieutenant Cross felt guilt because while he was daydreaming about Martha, the girl who he was in love with, when something went wrong with his soldier. He should have taken the initiative to go into the tunnel and check if everything was good with his soldier. The guilt became deeper after the Lavander's death. Even that time instead of crying for his soldier, Cross started to think about Martha again. “He felt shame. He hated himself. He had loved Martha more than his men and as a consequence Lavander was now dead”(106).
They carried memories. Every soldier had memories. Some shared the same memories, some had personal memories to recall. “They told stories about Ted Lavander's supply of tranquilizers, how the poor guy did not feel a thing, how incredibly tranquil he was”(108). They also had memories which not all of them will remember. For example Lavander's death, which only Kiowa saw. “Kiowa, who saw it happen, said it was like watching a rock fall, or a big sandbag or something-just boom, then down-not like the movies where the dead guy rolls around and does fancy spins. Boom. Down”(101).
Lieutenant Cross remembered Martha all the time, but finally at the end of story he released those
memories in order to think about more important things, to think about his duties and be more...