What does the highlighted part means?

The ground rumbled beneath her, even as her ears popped with pressure –more laughter from The Tortoise in the Lake, even as the darkness of space focused and narrowed – became the shadow of wings, the curve on vast surfaces – the hulls of two huge ships flanking them; thin, sharp, like a stretch of endless walls

1 Answer 1


The phrase focused and narrowed makes me think of a laser light; as the light gets focused, the spot becomes more narrow.

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When the phrase is used in literature, it's often used for something more abstract, like a person's concentration or attention. When our minds block out other distractions, our attention becomes more narrowed and focused on the problem at hand.

As for this passage, it's hard for me to imagine how the "darkness of space" can become more focused and narrowed – unless it's trying to describe a shadow in the dark? It's a rather surreal passage, and I don't believe that a better grasp of English would give you a better understanding of what the author has written.

So, what does it mean? It might mean that it's time to find a more understandable book to read.

  • thank you for your great picture again. i think when getting closer and closer to the dark space, the darkness of space focused and narrowed---and darker and darker . it's not only about english level to understand the sci-fiction , and about imagination too. actually i think my enlish is ok too , until i run against these books which i learn more from them.
    – Lincoln
    Commented Aug 30, 2013 at 2:28

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