Dana Gioias Planting A Sequoia English Literature Essay

Dana Gioia ‘s “ Planting a Sequoia ” is about a male parent who has lost his first boy and in memory of him he workss a redwood tree. The verse form is separated into five stanzas each holding five lines. The talker writes in the first individual point of position to the redwood tree, but on a deeper degree he is talking to his dead boy. The talker expresses through apostrophe, enunciation, and tone that his boy will populate on and will ne’er be forgotten.

The rubric and first stanza of the verse form creates the scene and produces a glooming temper. The rubric sheds light upon the chief action of this verse form. The beginning of the first stanza sets the scene. We learn that the talker and his brothers are in an grove, and have been “ all afternoon ” , seting the redwood tree. Without the context of the rubric, nevertheless, line 2 can be interpreted as a entombment for a individual. We learn that there is a deep connexion with the talker and the redwood by the usage of apostrophe. The talker besides uses some kindhearted words when depicting the procedure of seting the tree. Wordss like “ puting ” and “ carefully ” in line 2 convey a sense of deep compassion. Line 3-5 are really graphic and the tone compliments the first two lines of the verse form. Here we learn that something put offing environments this event. Even when glumness surrounds the talker, “ Rain blackened the skyline ” , there is still a sense that there is a gleam of hope, “ cold winds kept it over the Pacific ” , and that hope lies within the length of service of “ our native giant. ” In line 4 the words “ stayed ” and “ dull ” farther implement the glooming temper. In line 5 the talker creates the sense that the old twelvemonth was much like the temper of this twenty-four hours “ cold ” , “ blackened ” , and “ dull grey ” .

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The dark and glooming tone of the old stanza alterations to a colorful and warm ambiance when the talker describes a Sicilian tradition of seting a fruit bearing tree when 1s foremost boy is born. The first line of this stanza illustrates the importance of the first born boy in Sicily, in which we can presume the talker ‘s household is from. By seting a fruit bearing tree after the birth of a kid that creates a balance on Earth. It is no error that people and fruit bearing trees live comparatively short lives in comparing to sequoias. In the 3rd line of the 2nd stanza we learn that “ [ the talker ] would hold done the same ” , because of the words “ would hold ” in this line it is non a far-fetched decision that the talker has lost his first born boy. In retrospect, the “ old twelvemonth ” from the last line of the first stanza can now be seen with lucidity. There are few things harder in a individual ‘s life than losing and holding to bury his or her kid, and this can make a deformed sense of clip in the head of the parent. Suddenly, the planting of this tree becomes a tragic state of affairs. By the relation of the Sicilian tradition the state of affairs becomes all the more tragic. Looking back, this full stanza is the talker ‘s manner of reflecting on things that would hold been. The alteration of tone from gloomy to colorful is grounds of this.

To starkly contrast the old stanza ‘s scene and tone, stanza three Begins with the words “ But today [ aˆ¦ ] ” . This stanza is about the talker burying “ All that remains above Earth of [ his ] first-born boy, ” with the roots of the redwood tree. The first line serves to suddenly interrupt the old stanza ‘s happy, gay temper. This is apparent by the words “ but ” and “ cold ” . This is besides apparent in line two of stanza three when the talker “ def [ Internet Explorers ] the practical usage of our male parents ” by seting a redwood tree, an tremendous tree that lives for 1000s of old ages but does non bring forth utile fruits, such as “ an olive or a fig tree ” . Besides in lines three and four of the 3rd stanza the storyteller seems to distance himself from the kid by utilizing the words “ [ aˆ¦ ] of an baby ‘s [ aˆ¦ ] ” and “ [ aˆ¦ ] of a first-born boy ” . By seting the redwood and transfusing “ a few stray atoms brought back to the elements ” into the tree, the storyteller is leting his boy to populate on through the ginormous tree and giving him a agency of lasting after decease. Like the redwood, his boy will non bear fruit throughout his life because he has perished. In this sense, the redwood serves as both a symbol for the decease of the kid, and as a beacon of hope that he will in some manner be able to populate everlastingly.

In contrast to stanza three, stanza four takes on a heater tone talking non of the present, but of the hereafter. Stanza four is all about the talker stating his redwood tree that he will make everything he can to foster it. The talker tells how he and his household will care for the tree, “ giv [ ing ] you what we can-our labour and our dirt, / Water drawn from the Earth when the skies fail, ” farther reenforcing the impression that the tree has become and will go on to move as a alternate for his asleep kid. The usage of consonant rhyme by agencies of repeat of the ‘s ‘ sound in lines three and five, “ darks scented with the ocean fog, yearss softened by the circuit of bees [ aˆ¦ ] / A slender shoot against the sundown ” sounds smooth and easy to the reader ‘s ears. This consonant rhyme shows the smooth passage the talker has made to assist the tree grow. He will “ give [ it ] what [ he ] can ” and make all that is in his power to do certain the tree grows and flourishes. Besides apparent in line three of the 4th stanza is that the talker is hopeful that the tree will populate to see more hopeful yearss. Further reenforcing this is the fact that they works the tree in a topographic point “ bathed in western visible radiation, / [ aˆ¦ ] against the sundown. ” This enunciation is besides much warmer and light than the relation of the present because the talker has a great sense of hope that his boy will love through this new tree and will be able to hold some kind of life beyond his ain decease.

Stanza five continues with the warm tone and continues to do mentions to the hereafter. This warm tone is expounded upon throughout the last stanza of the verse form every bit good as more mentions to the hereafter. The talker hopes that the tree will populate until after “ our household is no more, all of [ the kid ‘s ] unborn brothers dead, ” and will someday be able to “ stand among aliens, all immature and passing to you, / mutely maintaining the secret of your birth. ” Since his boy can non hold a long, fruitful life in the regular sense of the word, he hopes that by seting this tremendous, elephantine tree and inculcating his boy into the tree, the male child will be able to populate long after the talker and his immediate household is dead and the remainder of the household is “ scattered, ” and the kid ‘s “ female parent ‘s beauty ashes in the air, ” because he thinks that this will carry through what could non hold been fulfilled due to the male child ‘s decease.


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