Critical Response Magical realism is a style used by artist and writers to portray a very real view of the world today while





Critical Response.

Magical realism is a style used by artist and writers to portray a very real view of the world today while adding some magical elements in it. Magical realism is a dominant theme in Gabriel Garcia Marquez writing a very Old Man with Enormous Wings. The writer of this particular piece tries to make a very vivid connection between heaven and earth by illustrating the old man and the confusion that come about among the people. The subsequent paragraphs also illustrate how magical realism was portrayed in the story.

The people strongly believed that the flesh-and-blood angel had been held captive in Pelayo’s house. The family had a sick child the previous night. Pelayo did find an old man with wings laying in the mud and he looked so worn out and tired. The owners of the house were certainly mesmerized by what they saw. Such occurrences were not common or rather had never been experienced in that society and hence they had to seek the counsel of an older woman. The older woman stated that the mystical creature was certainly an angel from heaven and been sent to take the child but also it must have been so old and hence knocked down from the rain and they could not get to their destination. “He’s an angel,” she told them. “He must have been coming for the child, but the poor fellow is so old that the rain knocked him down.” (Marquez 458) The angel spent some time with the family and the news about the creature did spread far and wide and people from all works of life came to see the “angel”.

Among those who came to see the creature that was believed it fell from heaven was the local father, Father Gonzaga who to his disappointment the angel did not understand the language of God’s ministers. The creature spent some time in Pelayo and Elisenda house. The owners did make a fortune out of the “angel” and the money enabled them to make some improvements in their house, as they had place the angel in a chicken coop where individuals seeking divine interventions for their problems could come to see the angel. However despite the angel being believed to come from heaved he did cause a lot of frustrations to the family contrary to what we believe and what is expected of a creature from heaven. Elisenda, Pelayo’s wife states, “That it was miserable living in that hell that had angels” (Marquez 461). Just like any other person could have thought, Elisenda believed that the angel from heaven could have brought good tidings, happiness, peace, love, joy, health and even light to their lives. However, what was being witnessed was the family did feel that “angel was a bother, was not friendly, and could not communicate and was also of no use to any of the people that came looking for his help, his wings were also damaged and he could not do much for himself. From the strory the frustration is evident as Elisenda kept watching the creature as it made its flight after wings had grew back, from her words she could not believe that the annoyance that had been with them for the longest time was no longer in their home but only an imaginary dot on the horizon of the sea. (Marquez 462).

In the case of the story of the angel in A very Old Man with Enormous Wings, the people saw before them, what they believed to be an angel and yet they treated this angel poorly, knowing truly well that the creature was sent from heaven it was absolutely unbecoming of them to treat the creature with contempt as they did. The theory that can be derived from the story is, seeing and believing. From the story, one is left thinking that seeing is actually believing, the phrase is a popular today. The individuals in the story did travel from far and wide to witness the creature they believed had fallen from heaven and some held the belief that the same creature might heal their predicaments. However there are those that did not believe even after setting their eyes on the “angel”.

Works Cited

Marquez, Gabriel Garcia, and Fernando Birri. A very old man with enormous wings. Fox Lorber Home Video, 1988.