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Gathering Leaves Analysis

Author: Poetry of Robert Frost Type: Poetry Views: 1437

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Spades take up leaves

No better than spoons,

And bags full of leaves

Are light as balloons.I make a great noise

Of rustling all day

Like rabbit and deer

Running away.But the mountains I raise

Elude my embrace,

Flowing over my arms

And into my face.I may load and unload

Again and again

Till I fill the whole shed,

And what have I then?Next to nothing for weight,

And since they grew duller

From contact with earth,

Next to nothing for color.Next to nothing for use.

But a crop is a crop,

And who's to say where

The harvest shall stop?


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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

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Thanks guys u helped me get through my homework :) :D

| Posted on 2015-03-07 | by a guest

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i think he is trying to say something about the nature of the trees about their feelings.

| Posted on 2014-03-11 | by a guest

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Why do people go to such great lengths to microanalyse poetry; shaping and distorting their impression to suit what they believe the message is? What if frost simply got sick and tired of raking his own lawn that he decided to vent it out in a rather melancholy light, via poetry? What if he\'s looking down at us, laughing at our excessive need to relate to something to feel understood. It is human\'s sophisticated response to literature - to any art form, one may say. But true savage nature does not interpret. It simply listens, not inquires. Anyways, I do not know where I am getting with this. There\'s no way with you humans.

| Posted on 2013-05-09 | by a guest

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I think Frost is trying to say that ther are so many things in life that get in the way. We are so hard on ourselves and we have to work and do things that will overwhelm us. Sometimes we need to unload and let go and just relax. Frost even said something about loading and unloading

| Posted on 2013-02-25 | by a guest

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I think that the poem is about the absurdity of life. Somebody mentioned Sisyphus in their analysis, which is quite a good comparison: we do things all the time which are useless. However, Frost goes further than that. I think that he is actually arguing that humans waste their time on trifles which nobody needs. He mentions animals (deer and rabbits) and I feel that this is because animals don\'t need to interfere with nature. Frost thinks that humans build stuff, destroy forests etc. (symbolised by the gathering of fallen leaves) and make stuff that is unnecessary. We do all this because humans think that being \'savage\' is a negative thing, but Frost feels differently. He feels that we are just convinced that we are doing the right thing when it is clearly not right. All we are doing is interfering with nature when we don\'t have to. If deer don\'t have to, then neither do we.

| Posted on 2011-01-14 | by a guest

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Gathering Leaves could also be based on the story surrounding Sisyphus, who pushed a heavy stone up a hill everyday, where it duely fell down agian. The task of gathering leaves employs the same effort;picking sometihng up that arduously falls down every winter, and thus the task rather looses the point.

| Posted on 2010-06-06 | by a guest

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Gathering Leaves could also be based on the story surrounding Sisyphus, who pushed a heavy stone up a hill everyday, where it duely fell down agian. The task of gathering leaves employs the same effort;picking sometihng up that arduously falls down every winter, and thus the task rather looses the point.

| Posted on 2010-06-06 | by a guest

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I think this poem describes the mundane task of gathering lives in both a playful and frustrated manner. The similes within the first stanza are playful and childlike, reminding me of a child's nursery rhyme. I think that the voice of the poem begins to contemplate the 'point' of the task towards the end of the poem, highlighted by the change of tone in terms of phonology - there are many more harsher 'c' and 't' sounds which seem to bring the voice back to reality and into further thought about the fact that there is seemingly no reward for his labour. However I think Frost leaves us with a typically ambiguous conclusion by refusing to reveal his own view about whether persistence in this sort of task should continue. The phrase 'a crop is a crop' highlights that there is intrinsic value in such tasks, which can bring us some sort of benefit.

| Posted on 2010-06-04 | by a guest

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This poem is a comment on both the monotony of life, yet with at points an almost upbeat outlook, and the way in which man and natures' cyclical nature is linked. The way in which Frost describes the harvest is bleak in its presentation of an impossible task- 'the mountains i raise, elude my embrace', and 'i may load and unload', as well as showing a slight menace in the setting- autumn, the liminal stage between life and death, summer and winter, as all nature begins to die- coupled with examples such as the fifth stanza, 'they grew dulled from contact with earth, next to nothing for colour', hinting at a decaying state.
Forst, in the final stanza, then also presents a final view of the 'harvest' of leaves which can be interpreted as both cynical and positive. 'a crop is a crop' suggests the optimistic outlook that everythihng in nature and in the world has intrinsic value, and this continues 'and whos to say where The harvest shall stop?' shows, as previously stated, the cyclical nature, and at once it contains both menacing and vital connotations. the nature of a harvest is that of something which a human relies upon for their wellbeing, hinting at the previously mentioned theme of dependence between man and nature, and yet the sense of deperate monotony and hoplessness i also apparent, coming after such lines as 'i may load and unlad Again and again', as the actions of the narrator are intertwined with the cyclical nature of the seasons and nature itself

| Posted on 2010-06-01 | by a guest

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this poem is about even if something looks weird or has nothing 2 it dont judge. in other words dont judge a book by its cover

| Posted on 2010-04-25 | by a guest

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The tone of this poem is quite resigned. It just like the lives of most of us. Working, doing"meaningless"things everyday just because you have to do so, like in the poem "sweeping the leaves".

| Posted on 2010-03-25 | by a guest

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This poem explains the stages of our life that. In the younger age the human is full of enthusiasm he tries to work hard and earn as much as he wants and as he gets older his lie gets monotonus and boring and he doesnot enjoy his lie .But frost says that whatever one has to work till the end of his life.

| Posted on 2010-02-12 | by a guest

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i think this poem depicts thet there is a man and naature being compared tpo where they both have a bond. just like every day leaves get thrown away and are eventually re grown, as in life people die everday, but also every day a new person is born. there is a cycle to nature.

| Posted on 2009-12-28 | by a guest

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Although Frost is facing chores that are boring and routine-like, he accepts the fact light-heartedly.
Compared to 'Stopping by the Wood on a Snowy Evening' also by Frost, 'Gathering Leaves' conveys a more positive message.

| Posted on 2009-10-04 | by a guest

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I believe this poem depicts addiction. For example like drugs, when people first use them it is like the greatest thing they have ever felt ,they feel their adrenilene pumping. But after some time the drug starts to lose its exciting feel to it then its no fun. so people keep going back for more. Not even knowing when or where it will end

| Posted on 2009-08-05 | by a guest

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It is possible that this poem represents Frost's musings on his own work. In one instance, if we take the leaves to symbolise his works of poetry, we could read that 'Spades take up leaves / no better than spoons' which symbolise that there is no easy way of approaching his poetry, and his use of fauna in the next verse 'running away' suggests that these leaves, his ideas, are difficult to pin down.
He goes on further to question the fruits of his labor, remarking that when completed 'what have i then?' and proceeds to describe in metaphors their futility. He then remarks , 'a crop is a crop' and 'who's to say when the harvest shall stop' which brings to attention the transient nature of human toil.
The rhyme scheme seems to tie in to this theme, as it is rigidly structured in alternate rhyme, which to me reflects a kind of plodding forwards akin to labor, and from this we can get a sense of the poet's frustration and apathy.

| Posted on 2009-05-13 | by a guest

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Robert Frost was the very embodiment of juxta-positionings, which he used in order to create tension. This poem is a great example of this, with the whimsical rhythm (an example of Frost's 'Sound of Sense' thesis) is greatly contrasted with the far melancholic and sorrowful theme of the poem. The form of the poem is very representative of the themes within it. In the same way in which it seems brief, and in contrast to many of Frost's other pieces, to be lacking in any sort of meat (by which i mean large blocks of text in similarity to that of 'The Black Cottage'- pardon my metaphor vegetarians, for i find a similar pleasure in the use of metaphors as Frost does).

| Posted on 2009-05-09 | by a guest

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Thanks Isabel for enlightening us in the use of plagiarism and copying
As Frost would say,

| Posted on 2009-05-08 | by a guest

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'i think that the poem is about his life and how he compairs it to leaves'
Thanks for that, moron

| Posted on 2009-05-06 | by a guest

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I think this poem is about when someone does something that they do not enjoy but they do it to fit in with the crowd or because they feel they have to.

| Posted on 2009-05-05 | by a guest

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i think that the poem is about his life and how he compairs it to leaves

| Posted on 2009-04-20 | by a guest

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Isabel Rawlins
An important aspect of this poem are the sound effects that Frost uses. In the first three quarters of the poem there are many long vowel sounds emphasising the long, slow, repetitive and seemingly futile exercise of gathering leaves as can be seen in the opening lines with the words: "spades" "leaves" and "spoons". These long sounds continue as the speaker "load[s] and unload[s] again and again". The last two stanzas show contrast in their sound effects with the use of many short, sharp "t" "c" and "p" sounds as the speaker comes to some kind of realisation that despite the apparent wothlessness of his "crop" with "next to nothing for weight", "next to nothing for colour" and "next to nothing for use" who is he, who is anyone to say "where the harvest shall stop?" the speaker realises that we can find some purpose in even the most repetitive, boring tasks in our lives, such as "gathering leaves".

| Posted on 2008-11-21 | by a guest

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I think this poem is about Frost collecting leaves in autumn and dumping them next to his shed, then after a while they rot.

| Posted on 2008-10-29 | by a guest

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I believe this poem is about love. The leaves represent the women that he sleeps around with and he cannot hug them because he does not love them. While at first the leaves are wrought with exuberance and color, after spending some time on the ground (or in bed with him) they lose their color and excitement. he can keep raking leaves as much as he wants, but then what is he left with? A shed full of leaves that are no longer exciting and which cannot be embraced and still no love...

| Posted on 2008-10-05 | by a guest

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This story is a transparent reminder about the things that are really important in life. It narrates a man obsessed with “leaves”. Which I interpret as superficial possessions and friends. He spends all day collecting them just to end up with next to nothing. “I may load and unload again and again till I fill the whole shed and what have I then” (frost 13-16). In this passage it really shows his futile efforts to obtain something significant. He also talks about when he tries to pick up the leaves and they just fall right through his arms and back to the ground. This could represent when you actually try to depend on them they fall through and you are left high and dry.

| Posted on 2005-11-17 | by Approved Guest

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