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The Trees Analysis

Author: poem of Philip Larkin Type: poem Views: 5

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The trees are coming into leaf

Like something almost being said;

The recent buds relax and spread,

Their greenness is a kind of grief.

Is it that they are born again

And we grow old? No, they die too,

Their yearly trick of looking new

Is written down in rings of grain.

Yet still the unresting castles thresh

In fullgrown thickness every May.

Last year is dead, they seem to say,

Begin afresh, afresh, afresh.


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

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The general message the poem gives us celebration of the life cycles of trees. It is an evocative mix of emotions.
The first stanza conveys the poet’s melancholy (sadness) – instead of deriving joy and hope from the tenacious growth of plants as they sprout new leaves to welcome a season of warmth – the poet see their budding ‘greenness’ as ‘a kind of grief’. As the trees are just coming into bloom, which means that it is spring time. The buds (or flowers) are relaxing their conical shape and spreading out their flowers to receive the sun's warmth. "Greenness" could be referring to two things: first, their color; and second, their naivety. They are naïve both because they are new sprouts, and because they don't know good they have it; nature has blessed them with the wonderful ability to be reborn every season unlike humans who live their life and die with no chance of renewal. It is this "greenness" that grieves the narrator, because by use of personifying green itself. As he is envious of their immortality.

| Posted on 2017-02-26 | by a guest

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The poet focus on the moment of life. Individual death of leaf is not important, the continuation of the life of leaves prolong the tree. The life cycle continues.

| Posted on 2010-12-03 | by a guest

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The poem encourages us to begin afresh and put our past mistakes behind us.

| Posted on 2009-11-30 | by a guest

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