Gathering Leaves perfect paragraph

Perfect paragraph on Gathering Leaves

Respond to the question: How is Frost presenting labour in this poem?

A rendre : 23 Mars


Please post your paragraph below and feel free to respond to/comment on others’ work.

9 thoughts on “Gathering Leaves perfect paragraph

  1. In Frost’s poem “Gathering Leaves” the poet uses rhetorical question to present labour through the activity of gathering leaves.

    In the middle of the poem, Frost uses a rhetorical question to demonstrate the theme of labour that is in the center of the poem. “And what have I then?” (l.16): this question truly evokes the question of fulfility of labour or the activity that the narrator is doing. Furthermore the rhetorical question awakes the sense of Pointlessness of the poem, questioning what the point of one’s actions or labour is. Following the rhetorical questions the poet puts in place multiple repetitions of the word “nothing”; this strong negation underlines the Uselessness of gathering leaves as the poet manifests through a comical tone throughout the poem, the irony of the useless act that so many individuals exercise. Through the rhetorical question the narrator thus questions not only himself but also the reader on the reason why we gather leaves. This calls upon the idea of “false productivity”, arousing the irony once again of this act that so many individuals value. Nevertheless the poem also calls forth the idea of the cyclic nature of leaf-fall. While the leaves themselves have little value, the work that is involved in gathering leaves has a great value, as the harvest and nature sees no end. That’s also why at the very end of the poem the narrator questions himself when this continuity will stop: “And who’s to say where the harvest shall stop?” (l.23-24). Along these lines, the poem elicits the topic of labour in connection the human being. Indeed, the Human condition is the temptation to feel in control; the comical personifications show the narrator’s desperate attempt to put order on nature, explaining thus the rhetorical question of the sense of gathering leaves or more generally labour.

  2. How is Frost presenting labour in this poem?

    In Robert Frost’s poem gathering leaves, the narrator uses simile, repetition and sensory imagery to portray the pointless aspect of labour as well as nature’s power over humans.

    To begin with, let’s look at the third and fourth line ; “And bags full of leaves, are light as balloons” that show a simile as the bags full of leaves are compared to balloons. This simile illustrates the pointlessness of gathering leaves, it is unsatisfying because the person gathering leaves does not get a concrete result of her work except a light bag of leaves which is insignificant and creates an impression of emptiness as well as false productivity. Moreover, the narrator keeps using simile in the second stanza ; “Of rustling all day, Like rabbit and deer Running away”, here once again the narrator portrays an unsatisfying image of labour through simile as he seems to envy animals that are “running away” from any responsibility, they are not tied up to work like humans are. This shows that labour comes with human condition and that it is a fatality no one can escape from. In the last three stanzas, the speaker uses repetition such as in lines 13-14 and 22 ; “I may load and unload”, “again and again”, “But a crop is crop” to illustrate the repetitive rhythm of work, these repetitions seem to mimic the routine one is enrolled in when working. The following repetition “But a crop is a crop” questions the real purpose of harvesting and shows the power nature has upon humans in the end. Indeed, in this poem, it seems that nature chooses for humans and controls them. Labour is not an activity humans agreed to have, it was imposed by nature. Finally, the narrator makes great use of sensory imagery such as in line 5 ; “I make a great noise of rustling all day”, this quote accurately expresses the fact that the only final product he gets from his work is noise which is irrelevant and intensifies the impression of working with no purpose and leads to a feeling of emptiness. “Flowing over my arms” highlights the desperate need of humans to have control over their work but unfortunately failing. The leaves that flow over the narrator’s arms symbolize his attempt to find the unattainable purpose in his labour.

    • “This shows that labour comes with human condition and that it is a fatality no one can escape from.” OHHHHHHH *insert pablos face*
      that’s clever

  3. In his poem ‘Gathering Leaves’, Robert Frost uses childish vocabulary and repetition to enhance the uselessness of work.
    In the poem, the protagonist is picking up the dead leaves from the ground and putting them into bags. Here, the bags are assimilated to ballons: ’Are light as balloons’. This trivial comparaison shows how his work is undervalued and lacking of consistence.
    Pointing out the shallowness of the work while specifying the man’s struggles ‘Spades take up leaves / No better than spoons’ (line 1 & 2) brings pithy to the reader. His work isn’t valued or even taken seriously which raises the question of what the real purpose of work is…
    We can notice this under estimation of work in the second stanza when the narrator compares himself to vulnerable animals: ‘Like rabbit and deer’ (line 7). It gives us an impression of weakness, labour is here described as reducer of the human appearance.
    Finally, repetitions are present through the last three stanzas to show the non-sense of labour. Indeed the narrator declares ‘I may load and unload / Again and again’ which gives us the image of a repetitive task. To this he concludes ‘And what have I then?’; this rhetorical question denounces how society can take advantage of our work without giving us personal satisfaction.
    Also, we can relate to the repetition of the word ‘nothing’ lines 17, 20 and 21 which puts forward the fact that the man doesn’t see any results in his actions.
    We can conclude that work is here represented as pointless and as an accumulation of repetitive actions dehumanizing imposed by society.

  4. In Robert Frost’s poem “Gathering Leaves” the poet uses repetition and alliteration to proves the banality and the monotonous aspect of labour.

    First of all, the poet uses different repetition to proves this idea at the lines 13 and 14 : “I may load and unload / Again and again”. Here, Frost, with the repetition of the word again and the sound “load”, he makes the reader focus on that part of the poem. Here, the reader can understand easily that work is something banal and repetitive. We can also understand that when something is to repetitive, we become to get bored. Also, the fact that the man has to repeat his gesture again and again proves that he is useless because even if he works, he never end it.
    Secondly, Frost, in his poem repeats three times the word “nothing” at the lines 17, 20 and 21. This word represents the negation. So we can understand that the worker is pessimist about his work. In the poem, the man is reflecting about his work. So here, we have the sensation that the man is getting bored of the monotony and the repetition of his work. For him, his work is a false achievement.
    Finally, in the fifth stanza, the alliteration of the sound “n” is used. To continue on our way, this sound is a sound without rhythm. This sound is tedious and monotonous.
    So all along the poem, Frost wants to prove to the reader the banality and the repetition of work through the activity of gathering leaves

  5. In Robert Frost’s poem “Gathering Leaves”, the poet uses simile and diction to describe the work of gathering leaves.
    In the beginning, “spades” (line 1) is being compared with “spoons” (line 2), and “full bags of leaves” with balloons. The simile is kind of childish because the work at hand is reduced to a kind of game for kids. Also, the bags full of leaves weight nothing, yet it took a long process to get the leaves in the bags. Thus, even though the speaker spent precious time gathering leaves, he only has a weightless bag to show for it. In the second stanza, the simile sparks the imagination, for here is someone at it all day ( there must be loads of dry leaves) creating sounds that relate directly to nature; “rabbit and deer running away” (line 7 and 8). Wild creatures are running, and the speaker must be familiar with nature to know the sound they make. In the last stanza, the speaker describes the leaves as “Next to nothing for use. But a crop is a crop, and who’s to say where the harvest shall stop?” (line 21-24). The leaves are useless once they are brought into the shed. Yet, the speaker must continue this necessary process. He says a “crop is a crop” (line 22) so it must be gathered. There is no escaping the process of gathering leaves. The speaker wishes the harvest and task of gathering leaves would stop, but he knows that it’s not possible.

    • “There is no escaping the process of gathering leaves. The speaker wishes the harvest and task of gathering leaves would stop, but he knows that it’s not possible.” good conclusion, like it

  6. Apologies for the late response, i forgot to put it on earlier.

    How is Frost presenting labour in this poem?

    In his poem, “Gathering Leaves”, Robert frost uses comparisons and contrasts to portray the obligatory but unfruitful nature of work. Firstly we can observe the extended metaphor and naturalisation of a human characteristic “work” through the gathering of leaves and crops. This is present throughout the poem and highlights the importance of this theme “work” in the poem. As well as this the monotonous and everlasting task (whenever you’ve picked up a leaf a new one appears) highlights the redundancy and difficulty of work which can sometimes seem boring. The concept of difficulty is brought into perspective at line 3 and 4 where we have a “bag full of leaves” but as “light as balloons”. The presence of this contradiction highlights the idea and metaphor of work being difficult but without fulfillment. This is further emphasised by the simile comparing the work achieved to a balloon, something that ways metaphorically nothing (completely weightless). As well as this the balloon is something quite joyful that seems out of place here which makes it stand out particularly. After reflexion, the reader gets the impression that this balloon is in fact quite a childish toy. This further emphasised the idea of being condemned to hard work as it is present even for little children in the form of a balloon. The use of this comparison, straight at the beginning of the poem reminds mankind that from the youngest of age he will have to do pointless work. The image of weightlessness is contradicted later in the poem when the pile of leaves is described as a “mountain”. This contrast can be explained by the fact that here the narrator is describing the colossal amount of space these useless leaves achieved from hard work take. The hyperbole present in this contradiction really highlights the uselessness and the absurdity of this obligatory work. Finally, the condition of work is presented as a circular never ending loop through the two opposite terms “load and unload / Again and again”. The use of a contradiction and a repetition makes these lines stand out particularly. It also puts forward and emphasises the idea of monotony, through the repetition, but also forced work, present through the contradiction. We can therefore see that through contradiction and comparaisons in his poem, Robert Frost gives us an image of work as something that is is hard, boring, sometimes painful and without real aim, but necessary, and as obligation, almost as if we were condemned to work from the youngest age.

  7. How is Frost presenting labour in this poem?

    In Robert Frost’s poem “Gathering Leaves”, the narrator uses simile and sensory imagery to present labour through the activity of gathering leaves and demonstrate the nature’s power over people.
    Robert Frost chose labour as the main theme of his poem, specifically gathering leaves which is a task we can all relate to. First of all, the speaker starts off the poem by saying that it is a difficult and unsatisfying process to gather leaves (l.1-4) “Spades take up leaves no better than spoons, And the bags full of leaves Are light as balloons”. We have here the comparison between spades and spoon as well as leaves and balloons. The spades used for gathering leaves are inefficient here and the bags full of leaves weight nothing, yet it took a long process of using useless tools to get the leaves in the bags. Even though the speaker spent precious time doing this hard work, he only has a weightless bag to demonstrate it. Robert Frost describes the process of gathering leaves as a part of the harvest which gives him no gratification however he knows it is essential and says a “crop is a crop” so it must be gathered. Moreover, in the third stanza, “But the mountains I raise … And into my face” (l.9-12) the speaker talks about how it’s boring to collect leaves so he imagines that the “mountains” are “flowing”, but the negative energy snatches this thought away and throws it in his face. This can also show the link between men and nature, nature has power over men. The speaker wants this annoying and boring process of gathering leaves to stop but unfortunately this is no escaping it. The leaves are uncooperative, the end of this process does not leave the speaker with some sense of accomplishment or happiness.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *