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Frost Commentary: The Tuft of Flowers

Alicia Wei

Quotes

Commentary

How does the poem use structure to bring about the development of its ideas? Throughout the poem, Frost writes in couplets. More specically, Frost writes in heroic couplets which are most commonly used in an epic and narrative poetry. Nearly all of the couplets within the poem end in a punctuation mark, creating the rhythm or beat of the poem. This allows the reader And then he ew as far as eye could see, / And then to be drawn in to the poem, as if they were on tremulous wing came back to me (lines 17-18) marching side by side with the speaker as he continues with his endeavors. The use of couplets throughout the poem makes the overall tone of the poem seem tranquil and peaceful. This allows the creation of a the theme of unity within the poem between the reader, the speaker, and the average working man. Frost also writes in iambic pentameter throughout the poem, which when coupled with the the couplets, creates a soothing rhythm throughout the poem that allows the beginning a unication between every line of the poem. This literally furthers the theme of unity within the poem and guratively represents the unity between the reader, the speaker, and the average working man. The iambic pentameter also allows the overall tone of the tranquil and peaceful tone of the poem to be continued awlessly until from start to end.

I went to turn the grass once after one/ Who mowed it in the dew before the sun (lines 1-2)

Frost Commentary: The Tuft of Flowers

Alicia Wei

The couplets and iambic pentameter build up the tones of the poem. At the start of the poem, the speaker is extremely lonely and has (what seems to be) a negative view on the world. The only living thing within the setting seems to be only that of the speaker. However, when the speaker sees the I looked for him behind an isle of trees; / I listened buttery utter past a small jumble of owers that for his whetstone on the breeze (lines 5-6) his mower somehow missed, he begins to reconsider his previous thought about the world as he realizes that mans seemingly individuality is all but an illusion. The tone then changes to one of wonder and hope. In reality, man is connected with each other and with nature, furthering the theme of unity within the poem. What kinds of imagery and gurative language are used and to what effect? Within this poem, Frost uses allegory to further the theme of unity. The allegory is used to create a connection between the speaker and the reader. In doing so, frost is creating a connection between the two, as if the reader is the speaker, and the speaker is the reader. In doing so, he further emphasizes the theme of unity to the reader. At the start of the poem, Frost uses the alliteration of the w sound to represent the sound of the mower mowing the grass. This alliteration of the sound w creates a very abrupt feeling at the start of the poem, as if the speaker is detached from his surroundings, his thoughts, and his body. However, this is alliteration of w is later used to illustrate the realization the speaker has that he is not alone, and that nature is very much in tune with him. Ultimately, Frost uses alliteration to further the theme of unity within the poem.

And feel a spirit kindred to my own; / So henceforth I worked no more alone (lines 35-36)

I went to turn the grass once after one/ Who mowed it in the dew before the sun (lines 1-2)

Frost Commentary: The Tuft of Flowers

Alicia Wei

Frost uses the imagery of the butterys ight near the middle of the poem, to represent the speakers thoughts beginning to change from being all alone to realizing the unity within the world. This parallels with the ight of the buttery through the fact that And once I marked his ight go round and round, / a butterys ight seems free because it is able to As where some ower lay withering on the y anywhere it wants. However, it seems to be all ground (lines 15-16) alone, never ying with a companion. On the contrary, the buttery is accompanied by nature, just as the speaker is accompanied by the reader and those who are in a similar profession (not physically, but on a more mental or emotional level). How would you describe the tone of the poem? Are there any shifts in tone as the poem develops? The poem begins with a very individualistic tone, one that paints the speaker as if he were all alone. However when the speaker forest sees the buttery, But as I said it, swift there passed me by / On the tone changes to one of bewilderment and noiseless wing a bewildered buttery (lines 11-12) wonder. This change in the tone of the poem is refreshing because it is no longer very depressing. Instead, the tone of the poem begins to lighten up. As the poem progresses after the introduction of the buttery, the tone continues to become more bright and curious through diction. Frost begins to A leaping tongue of bloom the scythe had spared / create a sense of leaping colors and bared surfaces Beside a reedy brook the scythe had bared (lines that reect light, which further emphasizes the 23-24) lightening of the speakers mood. This then directly affects the tone of the poem by creating a brighter outlook at the speakers surroundings.

Frost Commentary: The Tuft of Flowers

Alicia Wei

And feel a kindred to my own; So henceforth I worked no more alone (lines 35-36)

Towards the end of the poem, the tone shift is dramatic when compared to the rst few lines of the poem. By the end of the poem, the tone is more or less derived from the prowess of the speaker realizing that he is not alone. Frost ultimately allows this poem in more of a positive outlook on life,.

What symbols in the poem contribute to overall meaning? After the buttery is introduced within the poem, the speaker notices the tuft of owers that his mower seemingly spared. In doing so, Frost allows the tuft of owers t symbolize the unity and connection between individuals. The tuft of owers provide the answer to the speakers issue on individuality and loneliness by noticing the buttery, nature, and the man together (the buttery brings the mans attention to the tuft of owers and in turn, the speakers outlook on life begins to change).

But he turned rst, and led my eye to look / At a tall tuft of owers beside a brook, (21-22)

The buttery symbolizes the supposedly isolated endeavors of man in life. Just like the buttery, man goes through the day seemingly alone, executing But as I said it, swift there passed me by / On actions for what seems to be self preservation, and noiseless wing a bewildered buttery (lines 11-12) obtaining freedom as a result. Just like the buttery, man is ultimately connected to those around him without knowing it, just as the buttery is connected to the man and the tuft of owers. The scythe is generally associated with death. However within the poem, Frost uses the inverted archetype of the scythe to symbolize forgiveness and appreciation for one another. Essentially, the owers were so full of beauty that the scythe could do nothing, but to spare and preserve the owers.

A leaping tongue of bloom the scythe had spared / Beside a reedy brook the scythe had bared (23-24)