Campbell McGrath’s work, Shannon: a Poem of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, articulates a detailed account of the perdition faced by George Shannon, an 18-year-old recruit, during the time in which he became separated from the other members of the, Lewis and Clark Expedition, after leaving them to recover two missing horses. The trials Shannon faced during this time included starvation, confusion, the effects on his human body caused by the natural elements, fear, loss of hope, and the demoralizing realization that he may never be found by the rest of Lewis and Clark’s corps, and may perish alone, in the wilderness. Shannon refers to his memories of home and his dreams of furthering his education and returning to the …show more content…
Because this section of the story is Shannon’s lowest point, at which he has lost all hope, but also the peak in which he gains personal growth, this is “The Ordeal,” stage of the heroes journey. At this point, Shannon is able to make the distinction between the old world he once belonged to, full of family, education, and love, and his old identity as the naïve, boastful hunter, and the new, wiser self he has become. He has learned to accept the consequences of his wrongful pride, and learned to let go of his vanity and admit his wrongs. Without this perilous journey, Shannon would never have realized the necessity in letting go his pride. This realization, and his personal growth through his strife is “the reward,” of his heroic journey.