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Not So Good Earth Analysis Essay

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The Not So Good Earth

For a while there we had 25-inch Chinese peasant
families famishing in comfort on the 25-inch screen
and even Uncle Billy whose eyesight's going fast
by hunching up real close to the convex glass
could just about make them out--the riot scene
in the capital city for example
he saw that better than anything, using the contrast knob
to bring them up dark--all those screaming faces
and bodies going under the horses' hooves--he did a terrific job on that bit, not so successful though
on the quieter parts where they're just starving away
digging for roots in the not-so-good earth
cooking up a mess of old clay
and coming out with all those Confucian analects
to everybody's considerable satisfaction
(if I remember rightly Grandmother dies
with naturally a suspenseful break in the action
for a full symphony orchestra plug for Craven A
neat as a whistle probably damn glad
to be quit of the whole gang with their marvelous patience.) We never did find out how it finished up... Dad
at this stage tripped over the main lead in the dark
hauling the whole set down smack on its inscrutable face,
wiping out in a blue flash and curlicue of smoke
600 million Chinese without a trace...

The title contains “not-so-good” describing the contents of the poem, which is a negative adjective compound. It is a parody of the book “The Good Earth” by Pearl Buck, which is about the good times, values and Chinese proverbs.

The phrase “For a while there” shows how Western society is apathetic towards the Chinese.

“25-inch Chinese peasant families” explains that the characters in the poem are watching a 25-inch screen television.

“famishing in comfort” is a juxtaposition in line two, whose ...

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