How do you respond to the ending of ‘When the Wasps Drowned’ and how does Wagtail make you respond the way that you do by the way she writes? By f_society In When the Wasps Drowned’ it ends on a highly disturbing enigmatic note, to which you aren’t surprised by because, of the oppressive and enclosed atmosphere throughout the story which may of lead to the withholding of information about the girl at the end. There is a lack of resolution at the end of the story which seems to be the reason why the writer seems to be looking back at a past memory, perhaps to relieve the guilt she eels towards her actions now that she didn’t feel before.
We stepped back out into the sunlight of the garden. ‘ This shows that Beeline does not feel any guilt toward her actions as she is seen to be protecting her siblings. By the way the stepped into the sunlight it makes it seem that any blame that would have been put on her for concealing the truth is gone as she was doing the right thing by stopping her siblings from having to experience the adult world. Also the closeness of the children suggests they may ‘close rank against adults. This is shown by the way Beeline acts like a mother towards her siblings, ‘There’s and Tyler were both clinging to my bare legs. This is showing the close relationship between the children, that even in front of the police who were at their door they still stand together as a unit to stop each other from getting into unwanted trouble. The sinister nature of the ending to the story reflects the behavior of the children throughout. The children seem to surround themselves with death from the start and do not seem to have any bad reaction to it. ‘There’s scoured the grass for wasps ropers… Using a stone, pound its body to dust. ‘ This shows that the children have experienced death, even though they were Just wasps.
This natural behavior about death is seen at the end when the photo of the dead girl is shown and all three siblings stand and deny any knowing of the girl We all shook our heads’ they don’t show any emotion, keeping a natural look upon them so not to create any suspicion. By the way in which Wagtail writes it makes the reader’s response to the ending less of a shock as throughout the story she is foreshadowing the disturbing enigmatic ending. Throughout the story Wagtail give the reader clues to what the truth of the story is but never fully tells the story fully which adds to the uncertainty of the ending.
These clues give the reader a chance to fill in’ the gaps for themselves. This is shown when that the body in the garden belong to this girl even though it is not actually told this. The oppressive and enclosed atmosphere that Wagtail creates from the start of the story flows throughout which gives the reader the hint that something will happen at the end. This makes the reader expect the type of ending we are given. This takes away the sense of surprise and shock that would normally be given at the end of a story like this. A pale hand reached towards us. ‘ This shows the harshness of the text, which makes the reader adjust to the tone of the story which makes the ending less of a surprise for the reader. The narrator of the story comes across as quite defensive of their actions, making it seem as though they never did anything wrong leading up to the ending. ‘l took the ring from There’s thumb’, by this line we are shown that by this ring the girl has a instant reminder of the body that is under her garden but doesn’t show any emotion towards having it.
By this we know how Beeline feels like she has done no wrong in hiding the truth and stealing from the body, she doesn’t feel guilty for her actions. This makes the ending less of a surprise as we know how little her emotions play a part in this situation. In conclusion the story ending is not a surprise to the reader as throughout the story the disturbing ending is foreshadowed and hinted towards which makes the reader expect the ending that awaits them.