Comment on the title of the poem The Heart of the Tree. Is it suitable for the theme?
The title of Henry Cuyler Bunner’s poem The Heart of the Tree is apparently very simple. It looks like the poet wants to hail the trees for their usefulness in keeping life on earth. But actually it has a metaphor in it.
Throughout the poem, the poet has tried to prove the greatness of the man who plants a tree. To fulfill his aim, the poet has talked of mainly three different kinds of achievement of that man in three different stanzas:
- The man, firstly, helps in keeping the Environment beautiful and maintaining the ecological balance.
- Secondly, by planting a tree, the man helps the future generations to live a safer and happier life.
- And last but not the least, the man performs his duty to his fellow men and contributes to the nation’s growth by planting a tree out of his civic sense.
Now, the poem ends with the lines, giving a hint at the title:
A nation’s growth from sea to sea
Stirs in his heart who plants a tree.
This last line is very important as it shows the man’s heart, his feelings, dreams and wishes behind planting the tree. He has got a bigger heart to love his neighbours and his nation unconditionally. And here is the point of similarity between that man and a tree. A tree gives us many useful things and helps in many ways to keep the earth habitable (livable). It does all these unconditionally, as if out of its love to the nature, to the earth. And the man who plants a tree has also got the same — the heart of the tree. That is why the title is just and apt for the poem.