Creek Bridge is a short story written by Ambrose Bierce. In this short story, the narrator tells of a man named Peyote Farther about to be hanged for attempting to interfere with a railroad during the Civil War. Luckily, as he falls the rope snaps and he falls Into the water below with the noose and cord still around his neck and wrist. He unties his hands and then he “… Pounced upon the noose at his neck” (Ambrose Bierce 402). Although he has freed himself from restraints he is not out of danger. He was swimming down river with the world’s best marksman shooting t him.
Farther dove under water to escape the bullets and after dodging bullets and cannon shots he eventually makes it to a bank. Peyote starts to make his Journey home and travels all night! Just as he see’s his wife, he feels a blow to the back of his neck that kills him. Ambrose Bierce has a beautiful writing style that flows very well. She is very descriptive and can easily paint a picture for her audience. On page 399 Ambrose writes, “HIS features were good–a straight nose, firm mouth, broad forehead, from which his long, dark hair was combed straight back, falling behind his ears to the collar of his well-fitting frock coat. Ambrose Bierce is very creative in her plot and really puts us inside the mind of Peyote. Ambrose was trying to make us think that Peyote Farther had escaped and was going to go home and live to see another day when ABA He dies suddenly because his noose breaks his neck. She definitely fooled me, as I’m sure she did many others. Overall the story is put together very well and is entertaining throughout. Ambrose throws In a flash back In one part of the story that lets us know why Peyote is being hanged. This is very creative and it also gives us background information on our main character.
The flashback is the most important part of the story, in my opinion. It Is very well placed and makes us forget what Is happening In the present so she can set up Peyote’s daydream to make It sound much more believable. If It was not for the flash back the events that took place on the bridge (the rope breaking) and the subsequent events that occurred in the water would have not been near as effective. After the flash back Ambrose finishes the story with Peyote’s daydream until e dies at the end from being hanged. To me, the structure of the work Is key In this short story.
Telling the story in three parts really spaces things out and allows Ambrose to play with the plot a little. She could have Just kept in one long single piece of literature, but instead broke it down into chunks. At the end of the third part you actually have to think back to the other parts of the story and think, “was this real? Was it all a dream? ” This is absolutely the effect Ambrose Bierce was trying to make when constructing this short story. She wanted her readers confused, she anted her readers to be thrown for a loop.
Unless you have read the story before, then predicting the end of an occurrence at owl creek bridge is unlikely. The only part that really sounds unbelievable Is the part where he breaks free from his cuffs. Ambrose wrote, “What splendid effort! –what magnificent, what superhuman 1 OFF have been wanting us to question whether or not all this was real. What superhuman strength makes it sound as if it is impossible to break out of. An occurrence at owl creek bridge is one of my new favorite short stories.
It has been laced there because it has depth, a creative plot, and is very descriptive. Ambrose Bierce is very talented and has an incredible writing style. Throughout the entire story I was intrigued, whether it was due to the flash backs or if it was the details stated that were gathered from Peyote’s senses. The entire short story flowed and everything was placed perfectly. It is not a difficult story to understand, but it is one that can be shocking and leave a reader puzzled for a bit at the end. An occurrence at owl creek bridge is definitely a classic worthy of anyone’s time.