Coming Full Circle In Blue Highways

659 words - 3 pages

In his traveling diary, Blue Highways, William Least Heat Moon takes a trip to various destinations of unknown worth. His American back roads tour is characterized by the pattern of taking a journey that follows a circle. Least Heat Moon's circular journey is both literal and spiritual. His travels circle the nation, and he gathers history and personality from all corners of America. More importantly, however, Least Heat Moon sets out to fully explore and find himself. He provides the audience with the simple explanation of the circular nature of his journey because "following a circle would give a purpose&emdash;to come around again&emdash;where taking a line would not"(Least Heat Moon 3). Immediately, the reader is faced with William Least Heat Moon's goal to find himself and the wisdom of others.

Before his journey began, Least Heat Moon experienced two significant life-changing events. First, the author was abandoned by his wife after being separated for nine months. Then, as a result of declining enrollment, he lost his job teaching English at the University of Missouri. At a time when some people might consider their situation hopeless and consider the extreme act of taking their own life, William Least Heat Moon decides to take a meandering adventure on America's country roads to try to find the "forgotten people" with genuine character and interesting stories. He begins his journey at "zero," the very beginning of his circular adventure. Least Heat Moon reasons that "a man that couldn't make things go right could at least go"(3).

Because of the life-changing events he experienced, William Least Heat Moon just wanted to go. He felt that if things couldn't go right for him, he could chuck routine. He didn't want to walk out on his life. He wanted to start a new beginning. He felt that if he started all over again, he would find some...

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