An Explication Of A Passage In Hemingway’s “A Clean, Well-lighted Place”

The other person said, “Good Night.” He continued to converse with himself, turning off the electric lamp. The light was there, but it was important that the area be pleasant and clean. Music is not what you want. Music is not what you want. Even though you are allowed to stand in front of bars with dignity, that is not what you need. What was he afraid? It wasn’t fear, it was dread. He was too familiar with it. It was nothing at all, and a person was nothing. It only needed light, and that was it. It was not something that everyone could feel, but some did live there and it was not easy to forget. Our nada that art in nada. Let us have this nada daily and give us this nada every day. Hail nothing without you, there is nothing with thee. He smiled as he stood in front of a shining steam-pressure coffee machine.

“What was he afraid of?” He didn’t fear it, he knew what it was. It was all just a little and a person was nothing. It was just that, light was all it required and a certain cleanliness and order.” We discover that this ailment was not fear or dread. The older waiter’s thoughts are not clear and easy to describe. He is unable to describe the condition and uses vague pronouns it/that, without ever clarifying what it/that refers to. The only thing that is certain about the condition is its absence. The older waiter repeats the phrase “nothing” repeatedly, stressing it. Hemingway deliberately makes it vague. Hemingway deliberately makes it seem that Hemingway is being vague. Hemingway says that the old waiter needs a cafe with good lighting to keep their thoughts away.

This statement explains why the elderly waiter and the aged man have problems. It also explains why people want to stay late at night in cafes. He added that this feeling is not exclusive to the old woman and old man. “Someone lived there and never felt it. But, he knew that all was nada.y.p.nada.y.nada. He describes this “nothing” as something he lives in, but never feels. This feeling keeps the old waiter up at night and drives him to keep going to the cafe, is something he has difficulty expressing.

The old man continues to think and says the Lord’s Prayer. Instead of saying all the words, he uses nada to replace them. “Our nada that art in nada. Nada be thy name, thy Kingdom nada. It will be nada just like it is in the nada. We ask for this nada to be our daily nada, and we ask that nada us ours as well. This prayer is intended to protect. His main words are: protect us, lead us to temptation, and forgive our transgressions. These words are very significant. He says that religion, to which many people look for meaning and purpose, can also be nothingness. He says, rather than saying “Our Father Who Art in Heaven”, the older waiter replies, “Our Nada Who Art in Nada”. He destroys both God’s idea and his own.

“Hail no one full of nothing. Everything is with thee,” says the old man. They have no fear. The cafe is the antithesis of nothingness. Its orderliness and clear lighting suggests order and clarity. The old man and the waiter both fear this nothing, so they visit the cafe. The old waiter explains that “nothing can be with you”. He believes that everyone feels the same nothingness. Nothingness can be described as loneliness. The old waiter’s description about nothingness is strong evidence that he is lonely. He seeks out well-lit, clean areas. These areas help him to reduce his loneliness.

This cafe is where the old waiter finds his peace. It was the light, but it was necessary for the place to be pleasant and clean. Music is not what you want. Music is not what you want. It is impossible to stand before a bar with dignity even though it provides all the necessary amenities.” He stated that not only is the light what keeps out the noise but also the cleanliness, pleasantness and cleanliness. The old waiter says that music is not what you want. These bars are not able to keep out the nothingness. The cafe, a well-lit and clean place, provides order to chaos. Both the old man as well as the waiter find this cafe important.

The old waiter smiles and continues to go to the bar after all this. “He smiled at the bar and sat down in front of its shining steam pressure espresso machine.” He is not drunk like the old gentleman and finds pleasure in the fact a bar has a steam-pressure coffee machine.


  • killiantrevino

    Killian Trevino is an educational blogger and school teacher who uses her blog to share her knowledge and experiences with her readers. She has a strong interest in teaching and sharing her knowledge with others, and her blog is a great way to do that.