Who has seen the wind resembles Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain or Lord of the flies by William Golding. Just like the aforementioned texts, the book is a children’s book whose audience is adults. In this novel, W.O Mitchell traces a characters quest for knowledge, illustrating his development from the age of four to the teenage. This character is a small town boy who wants to understand the chaos that underlies human experience. The title of the book (Who has seen the Wind) is metaphoric because it implies that the characters quest for knowledge is moved by an indirect force. In the story titled who has seen the wind, W.O Mitchell tries to explain the meaning of life to his young audience. The protagonist in the book is a young boy who at a tender age develops a comprehension of death and birth through observation of animals. The birth of forbsies pigeons helps him to understand the concept of birth. The death of a pigeon, a dog and his own father helps him to understand to understand death, birth and the real meaning of life. His first encounter with life is when he and his friend called Forbsie discover some baby pigeons that had hatched. Brian could not easily grasp this fact, so he asks his father for help. Unfortunately, his father is unwilling to provide information on this matter and this leads to a brief discussion devoid of details. After the discussion with the father, Brian makes a conclusion. He concludes that the male pigeon places the baby pigeon in the egg and the baby grows while the mother is laying the eggs. When the baby pigeon grows, it hatches out of that egg. This explanation leaves Brian confused about the nature’s way of reproduction. At this stage, the protagonist is very naive because he thinks that human beings and animals reproduce in the same manner. The protagonist encounter with life comes when he and his friend Forbsie watch the birth of some rabbits. This time round, his knowledge of birth develops further though at first, he is not very sure about the new born rabbits because of their funny and weird looks. They do not have hair while their legs are not visible. The two boys speculate that the rabbits will grow up and also have babies and the cycle will continue, creating an infinite number of rabbits. Brian goes back to the father to seek explanations on what they had just observed while the rabbits were giving birth. When the protagonist asks his father how the rabbits are started, he gives an inconclusive answer that likens rabbits to plants. The father tells him that rabbits are started by a planted seed and they are different from pigeons. This explanation changes Brian’s philosophy on birth as his mind grows and his naivety ebbs away. After the discussion with the father, Brain makes a conclusion that rabbits come from a seed planted inside the mothers unlike pigeons. A baby rabbit develops inside the womb of the mother until its ready to come out while a baby pigeon develops inside an egg until it is ready for hatching. This makes his knowledge of birth more vivid and we can conclude that at this stage, the main character understands more about how animals are born. Apart from understanding the concept of birth through animals giving birth, Brian also understands the concept of death. The protagonist endures very many experiences that help him to understand what death is and why it occurs. After the baby pigeons are born the main character, takes one baby pigeon to his home amid pouring rain. The young pigeon cannot withstand that harsh weather and by the time he gets home with that pigeon, the pigeon is dead. At this point in this story, Brian does not understand death, but his father tells him that death is a means which a living thing comes to an end. this experience teaches the protagonist that one must dig a hole in which the dead animal should be buried. He does not even know why dead animals are buried. However, he gets more information about death when his won dog dies. Brian expects the dog to behave the way it has been behaving, like wagging its tail but all he can see is a lifeless body of his dog. He cries because he wants his dog back but no amount of tears can bring the dog back to life. This experience really shatters Brian and he feels a lot of pain and emptiness inside is wrecked soul. His encounter with death goes beyond animals because at one point, his father gets seriously ill then dies. This one deals a severe blow to the protagonists and he cannot easily accept the death of his father. He is not sure about how the society expects him to behave after the death of his father . Fathers mean the world to most children and the thought of losing one is enough to make a boy grieve but
He did not cry Brian does not cry immediately like other kids. He does not even understand why he does not cry after the death of his father but when the reality strike hard, he grieves very much. He really cries bearing in mind that his father was his mentor and he always turned to him for help when things became complicated. His father had been instrumental in his process of growth, explaining to him various concepts regarding life and death. Now he knows that his dad is gone forever and his death gives Brian the greatest life lesson, that is one has to accept the truth and let go of fears. It is important to note that the protagonist develops and understanding of life birth and death as every experience in the story makes him more mature. Though at the end of the novel, he has not fully grasped the concept of life and death, it is evident that he has learnt a lot of things to do with birth, death and life and this has made him a better and mature person. His understanding of birth is a baby getting born after the father plants a seed in the mother while death is a process where a living thing physically goes forever. Throughout this novel, Mitchell has portrayed Brian developing in different phases. He is a growing and maturing young man who begins a search that is meant to discover the real meaning of life.