The vignette of the ballade The wreck of the Edumund Fitzgerald written by Gordon Lightfoot portrays two prominent themes; environment and loss. On a denotative level the poem explores the theme of environment that warns the reader of the deadly winds and dramatic weather conditions that await the passengers of the Edmund Fitzgerald. The sailors are encountered with a gruesome side to nature: “When the gales of November came slashin’/When afternoon came it was freezin’ rain/In the face of a hurricane west wind” (22-24). Lightfoot’s description helps the reader to understand the destruction that the environment of Lake Superior had on the sailors. By painting a picture of demolition and tragedy in our minds, it becomes easier to grab the connotative theme of loss. The poem encourages us to sympathize with the sailors who were robbed of their lives. We are given the change to understand the mourning that the town experience: “The church bell chimed till it rang twenty-nine times/For each man on the Edmund Fitzgerald” (51-52). How the loss of these men should be remembered and honoured in the faces of those they have left behind. At the same time both themes intertwine, the theme of the destruction of environment can be met with the theme of loss and remembrance. As the reader a strong takeaway should be the importance of better preparation before setting sail onto a lake known to be selfish with its’ dead. The season they sailed in was not supposed to be detrimental however the yielding of the sailors will help future sailors to prepare even when sailing prior to the stormy season. “Superior, they said, never gives up her dead/When the gales of November come early” (55-56).