Comment on the theme and style of Henry Cuyler Bunner’s poem The Heart of the Tree.
What is the central idea of the poem?
Henry Cuyler Bunner’s poem ‘The Heart of the Tree’ deals with an incredibly simple theme of the usefulness of trees and the greatness of the man who plants a tree. All three stanzas of the poem start with the line “What does he plant who plants a tree?”, revealing what it’s all about.
In the process of proving the greatness of the man who plants a tree, the poet has described a tree from various angles like ‘a friend of sun and sky’, as a flag flying in the breezes and a home of birds. He also mentions that a tree gives us shade, brings rain and helps in the process of regeneration. Trees have other ecological and social benefits too like helping in a nation’s growth. [Read the complete explanation of the poem]
To talk about the poem’s style, it’s very rhythmic. The lines are in iambic tetrameter. The rhyme scheme is ABABBCCAA in each stanza. Some metaphoric expressions through easy wordings have made the poem more expressive and memorable.