Essay on The Message Behind "A Poison Tree"

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William Blake was a first generation Romantic poet. He lived a long life in which he wrote a copious amount of poetry (Eaves). Blake was also a painter. This aided Blake’s advancing symbolism; he could paint a lovely picture with his words (Eaves). The poem that I have analyzed is A Poison Tree. Blake strategically placed imagery and personification to hide his underlying truth; do not store up anger because horrible situations will arise. At first glance the poem seems hate filled and that he just wrote it out of revenge or angst, but in reality he is teaching a moral lesson that should be taken very seriously. Blake’s structure in the poem is interesting in its symbolism. He wrote A Poison Tree in four stanzas. Upon first glance it …show more content…
In this stanza the speaker has emotionally nourished his wrath (Eden). There is a contrast in imagery, a cold, lonely, melancholy feeling comes about when the speaker says the lines “And I watered it in fears night and morning with my tears.” The tears could be from the speaker’s fear of his wrath which is plausible or they could come from the pure wrath that he feels towards his foe. The speaker is so overcome by emotion that he can’t hold it any longer. The other image is that of warmth but tainted by hate when the speaker says “And I sunned it with smiles, and with soft deceitful wiles.” Sunned brings about images of yellow and warmth but the smiles and deceitful wiles bring up images of trickery. The speaker is trying to fool the foe into believing he likes him by acting nice (the smiles) yet he is all the while tricking him with lies (deceitful wiles). Autumn is a time for harvest, to pluck the sweet apple from the tree. The obvious imagery and personification in this stanza is when the speaker is talking about his foe “till it [the tree] bore an apple bright.” Most shiny or attractive objects grab on to our attention; the apple here being a symbol for his “sugar coated” anger. This brings to mind the old thought of keeping your enemies close. The apple is a physical manifestation of the narrator’s anger and hate. This next line draws the reader in just as it draws in the foe; “and my foe beheld it shine.” I analyzed this line to mean that his hate or wrath is
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