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Sound Of Waves

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Tone evokes different emotions from the reader regarding situations in a story. The tranquil diction used by Yukio Mishima in The Sound of Waves is very important to the calm island setting used in the story. The author's smooth word choice complements the burgeoning love between Shinji and Hatsue, the two main characters. Mishima's style also accentuates many instances of situational irony between the two young lovers and is only one of the many elements he uses in his composition.

The Sound of Waves is a love story about Shinji and Hatsue and how they conquer the cruel gossip of the village they live in. The lack of control Shinji and Hatsue have of slanderous rumors created by the villagers is the groundwork for the situational irony found in the story when they hear, " 'Do you know people are spreading stories about you and Hatsue?'" (103). When Hatsue and Shinji have their first date in the farm house, magic occurs as "The boy saw her, and then standing just as he was, like some piece of heroic sculpture, never taking his eyes from the girl's he untied his loincloth" (75) and a new love is sparked . Immediately after this sentence, Mishima writes, "At this moment the storm suddenly planted its feet wide and firmly outside the windows" (75), signifying that what the two teenagers are doing not only causes a storm on the island, but within their lives as well. The irony is that the village people spread rumors that the two young lovers slept together when, in reality, they "insisted going no further" (77) than to "kiss in comfort" (78). The lies the townspeople spread about Hatsue and Shinji is a force that keeps them apart and an influence they cannot control.

The diction used in The Sound of Waves allows for a particular attitude to be shaped by the author. "They heard this sound and the whistling of the storm as it swept past the high windows, all mixed together with the beating of their heart" (77) intertwines the forces of nature with the forces of the couple's love. The storm in this scene conveys a feeling that opposes the actions of the characters. The tone is one of negativity, in that Mishima compares the actions of love to that of a very destructive storm, juxtaposing the two which gives the element of foreshadowing.

Mishima leads his audience to believe he is not a fan of imprudent gossip or love. Unlike a typical love story, Mishima does not concentrate on the overwhelming feelings of devotion Shinji and Hatsue have for each other, but pays more attention to the deep feeling of pain the two experience when they are kept apart in, "the



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