Coral is the tragic figure

Coral is the tragic figure, that has unfortunately lost her son to the Vietnam war. Her transformation reinforces notions of discovery that lead to acceptance of death and a reconciliation of the self in the face of tragedy. Supporting this approach is the nature of the balloon that it can become ‘lost’ at anytime. The colour of the balloon symbolises grief and depression as it acts as a dark cloud following her every move. It reeks of melancholy making life look bleak. In comparison to Coral, at some point she needs to let go of the balloon, as she continues to travel away into the clouds of her psyche, but she doesn’t seem to have the willpower to do so. She fears she will crash back down to earth. After watching Midsummer Night’s Dream she witnesses Tom, the star of the play, provoking Coral to tears. Not until everyone is gone does she break her silence and make an emotional soliloquy. “That boy!… he looked so sick yet so wonderful… is it better for them to die like that? The juxtaposition of Coral feeling emotional at a humorous play makes it clear to the audience of the connection she made with Tom and that she can’t help but tangibly grasp onto the terminal illness that succumbs Tom and relate that to the fate of her own son. Hence the inadequateness to make social conversation to the other families due to a psychological stagnation she is facing with reality. Gow utilises the confronting nature of life and death to evidence the complications of discoveries.