Essay title: The Things They Carried
His love for Martha was unhealthy and almost obsessive. He still remembers clearly “touching that left knee” of Martha’s. Even out in the field he still reminisces how her knee felt. During a mission to destroy some tunnels, Cross imagines the tunnel collapsing on him and Martha. He also wonders if she is still a virgin or not and wonders why her letter are signed “love”. This distraction and incompetence of himself lead to the death of one of their fellow soldiers, Ted Lavender.
He has been shot and killed, partly because of Cross’ lack of focus on the situation. He keeps to himself as he blames the incident on only himself. Shockingly, as they were waiting for a chopper to take his body away, he digs a foxhole. While sitting in the hole, crying, he was also thinking of “…Martha’s smooth young face, thinking he loved her more than anything, more than his men…” at the same time. This abnormal love for Martha has defected his ability to perform his duties as a leader.
Martha has possessed him so much that even “without willing it, he was thinking about Martha.” This shows that he has lost control on where and when is the right time to think about things like that. Lieutenant Jimmy Cross was never the military type. He still wonders why he joined.
His rank as lieutenant seems unreal. He never truly demonstrates leadership. He separates himself from the rest of the Alpha Company as he thinks about Martha. He uses his love for Martha as an escape to war, but he fails to realize that the love for between them was never real.
By the time he realizes what loving Martha has gotten him into, it was already too late. On the morning after Ted Lavender’s death, he decided to try to stop his mad love for Martha. He burns and buries Martha’s letters and the photographs of her. Even after burning them, he could still imagine Martha and he still remembers what was in the letters. As he thinks about her more, he begins to hate her.
Even as he really loves her, he begins to hate her; it was a “hating kind of love.” He told himself to stop thinking her. He was “determined to perform his duties firmly and without negligence.” Firmly, leading the group, he puts leadership in front of love. Many years after the.