Friday, 2 May 2014

Day 651: Tree Season

I always think of this poem at this time of the year when the trees are getting leafier and greener by the day. It is exactly, as Larkin says here, 'like something almost being said.' 

Whatever about Larkin's trademark pessimism sneaking in with 'their greenness is a kind of grief' - (pah! greenness  is life, it is energy!) the poem is refreshingly optimistic. Especially that last onomatopoeic line in which you can hear the rustling of the leaves and their chant of rebirth: 'Begin afresh, afresh, afresh...'

The Trees - Philip Larkin

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.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear what you think! To leave a comment - comment as/sign in with your Google ID if you have one, or website or blog address, or if these don't apply, sign in as Anonymous, and leave your name if you like!