• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Planting a Seqoia commentary

Extracts from this document...


English A1: standard level Commentary on "Planting a Sequoia" Planting a Sequoia by Dana Gioia revolves around the idea of death of the narrator's child for that reason he is mourning and planting a Sequoia to express his grief instead of an olive or a fig tree, which are planted when the son is born. Even though the dominant mood of the poem is gloomy, there seem to be a glimpse of hope as planting a tree in the memorial of his son will continue to grow. The readers' first impression on the poem emphasizes on the ominous mood as the poem's begins with "Digging this hole, laying you in it, carefully packing the soil" this refers to the death of the someone close to the narrator. ...read more.


"A promise of new fruits in other autumns" also reinforces the fact of the rebirth hope. The narrator persists on explaining the day he plants a tree for his son in the third stanza. The narrator's radical grief strengthen as he defies "the practical costume of our fathers" when planting this tree. The narrator seems to address the tree as a human "planting you, our native giant", he also wraps a "lock of hair" of the child reinforcing the importance of the tree in his tribute, and gives further emphasis on the human comparison. In the fourth stanza the narrator addresses the tree and promises to "give what we can" meaning the love that will be passed on to it through the death of the child as he is regretting the care he could have given his child but could not. ...read more.


The speaker is still willing to try to have other children, "unborn brothers". The poet's choice of diction mirror the different feelings the speaker is having during the process of planting the tree and burying his son where the mood is constantly changing from a grieving father to one with future optimism in life. The five stanzas structure contradicts each other as one discusses the death and sorrow while other discusses the rebirth of hope through planting a tree. The sequoia will keep on growing representing the life of the son even after the death of the whole family. The spontaneous dialogue of the father gives a genuine effect as he explains the actions. The ambiguity of the poem and the vague theme of "life" and "death" make a paradoxical effect, which leaves the reader clinging as the poem progresses. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Languages section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate Languages essays

  1. IB English Poem Commentary - "Child and Insect"

    The adjectives used throughout the poem are quite negative, such as "shrieking", "fearful", "broken", brittle", "dead", and "naked". The verbs tend to be mostly monosyllabic, which make the diction more childlike. For instance, "flick", "snatch", "clutch", "snap", throb", "latch", and "weep" are used throughout the poem.

  2. Christmas - origins, traditions and ideas for making gifts.

    Storage boxes are decorative and useful. Get several different sizes from the craft store, decorate them with paints or decoupage. Stack one inside the other. 59. Your hands are your hardest workers. Give them the pampering they deserve. Give a friend or relative a nice manicure kit and some hand softening lotion.

  1. English Commentary

    Survival reader, and the repetition of "Tell me" demonstrates Pi's desire for certainty and comfort from his family who were either lost at sea after the ship sunk or already deceased. The continued focus on 'me' being saved or protected tells us how selfish one becomes when one's life is in danger.

  2. Poetry Commentary on To His Coy Mistress

    that he would love and appreciate her for an extended period of time before physically engaging with her, but also a way to develop the concept of time; this is because most of the Jews, in actual fact, never, or have not yet converted to Christianity, showing that she has a lot of time to make her decision.

  1. Loss of Hope

    The two major symbols in the House of Bernarda Alba are the colour black and the cane. After the death of her husband, Bernarda refuses to let go of the grip over her daughters. In her domineering way she makes sure religious and social rituals are followed.

  2. The apple tree

    He had been a lucky man to have her in his life, he thought to himself. Arriving to a small village the old man realized how thirsty he was. The houses, shrouded in plants and flowers, and the small pottery shops gave him a hint he was getting close to his destination.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work