Tag Archives: Vardaman

Vardaman

“I can feel where the fish was in the dust. It is cut up into pieces of not-fish now, not-blood on my hands and overalls…If I jump off the porch I will be where the fish was, and it all cut up into not-fish now. I can hear the bed and her face and them and I can feel the floor shake when he walks on it that came and did it” (54).

Faulkner, William. As I Lay Dying: The Corrected Text. First Vintage International Edition. New York: Vintage Books, 1990. Print.

Vardaman is equating the death of his mother with the “not-fish” idea of how his traumatic this idea of “not existing anymore” is.

Vardaman and his Fish

“Then I begin to cry. I can feel where the fish was in the dust.”

Faulkner, William. As I Lay Dying: The Corrected Text. First Vintage International Edition. New York: Vintage Books, 1990. p.53. Print.

Vardaman speaks in the first person whenever he talks about the fish he killed. This perspective gives the reader more of an idea about how Vardaman feels about the fish and dying. Vardaman feels remorse about dying where he begins to cry over the fish and begins to even empathize.

Vardaman’s Understanding of Death

“My mother is a fish” (84).

Source:

Faulkner, William. As I Lay Dying: The Corrected Text. New York: Modern Library, 2000. Print.

This quotation refers to a poignant moment within Faulkner’s work.  Vardaman, the youngest of the children, compares his notion of his mother to a fish that died that day.  It demonstrates his confusion toward the concept of death in general and “death’s” constant  presence within the novel itself.