Robert Frost's Use of Imagry in Birches

Topics: Birch, Shape, Tree Pages: 2 (751 words) Published: March 18, 2014

Robert Frost’s Use of Imagery In “Birches”
The poem “Birches” by Robert Frost, depicts the author’s imagination as to why the branches he sees on birch trees are so bent. Frost uses both visual and kinesthetic imagery in order to convey to the reader his exact thoughts as to reasons why the branches are bent. The author’s first reasoning is because the trees were “Loaded with ice…”(6). The author then begins thinking about the trees in a not such an analytical fashion, but more creative painting a picture for the reader of a young boy swinging on the limbs of the tree through the use of imagery. Frost uses these with the help of imagery to portray to the reader that life shapes every human just as the ice has shaped the tree and that sometimes one needs to escape reality every once in a while to become free again from the molding hands of the universe portrayed by the boy playing in the trees.

When discussing how the trees have been bent by ice collected by ice storms, Frost uses visual imagery to give the reader a nice idea of what he is seeing when observing the birches covered in ice. Frost describes the sun’s warmth melting the ice as “making them shed crystal shells” (10) making the reader picture the glistening ice in the sun slowly melting away layer by layer. This forces the reader to visualize branches burdened by the weight of the ice slowly getting lighter and lighter through the work of the warm sun beating down on them. Frost also uses a metaphor between the trees and humans when he writes the trees were “withered bracken by the load (of ice) and they seem not to break; though once they are bowed…”(14-15) Frost is showing the reader through visual imagery and metaphors that humans are the trees and throughout their lives experience such as ice storms shape the very being of them. Although we are being shaped by the world around us, as shown in line fifteen, “they seem not to break”(15) meaning that life can be pretty hard sometimes but as...
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