Poetry essay: Poems are like fruit trees

In a metaphorical way, poems are like fruit trees.  If you look at poems like they are fruit trees, you can improve your work.

Purpose

Both fruit trees and poems have a purpose.  Fruit trees produce fruit and poems express ideas and emotions.

When selecting a fruit tree, it is important to get one that grows the fruit you want.  When writing a poem, it is important to write one that expresses things the way you want.

Climate

Different fruit trees grow in different places.  Fruit trees have to be able to make it through the winter where they are.  They also have to be able to deal with the heat and the amount of rainfall.

In a similar way, poetry is affected by the climate around them.  How a poem will be received, can be influenced by what is going on that affects the audience for the poem.  A poem that might be viewed favorably at one time and place, might not be viewed so at another time and place.

Place

In additional to general climate, where you specifically plant a fruit tree matters.  Different trees have different light, moisture, and soil requirements.  A tree might do well in one place on a property, but not in another.

The same idea applies to poems.  Poems can do better in some presentations than in others.  Some poems work well for blogs, others do better in magazines, and others do better in social media.  It depends on the context and the audience.  A poem that works well on a greeting card, might not work well in a literary magazine.

Partners

For some fruit trees to produce fruit they need other fruit trees around them for pollination.  Sometimes they need different varieties.

The same idea can apply to poems.  Poems can be affected by the other poems around them.  The poem that a person reads before and after a poem can affect how they view the poem in question.

Watering

Fruit trees need regular watering.  Depending on the tree, they need deep watering at infrequent times, as opposed to shallow watering frequently.

Watering patterns could be viewed as a metaphor for time spent writing poetry.  Some poetry can be improved by setting aside a specific time and writing for an extended period of time.

Pruning

Fruit trees need pruning.  They need pruning to remove dead and diseased wood.  They need to pruning to help maintain their shape.  They need pruning to open up their forms.  They need pruning to help reduce disease and pests in some cases.  They need pruning to improve fruit production.

Pruning can be looked at as editing poems.  Poems benefit from editing.  Editing removes errors and mistakes.  Editing helps a poet see what parts should be removed and what parts should be moved around.  Editing helps a poet improve word choice and form.  Editing helps a poet make a poem more concise.

Fertilizing

Fruit trees need fertilizer.  Fertilizer helps with leaf growth, root formation, and fruit production.  Fruit trees need nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and other elements.  Without fertilizer, or some other addition of nutrients, a fruit tree will not reach its full potential.

Fertilizer for poetry could be looked at as a poet learning things that helps them improve their poetry.  It could be working on meter or rhyme.  It could be learning about metaphor and symbolism.  It could be reading other poets’ work to learn about ideas and presentation.  The idea is that a poet needs to learn things so their work can improve, the same way a tree needs fertilizer so it can grow.

Pest and disease control

Pests and disease need to be prevented, and if not, treated on a fruit tree if the fruit tree is to remain healthy.  There many ways this can be done ranging from having clean pruning cuts to using pesticide.

Pests and disease could be viewed as things that hurt a poet in their work.  It could be stress, it could be negative comments about their poetry, or it could be negative feelings about their own work.

A poet needs to prevent and remove themselves from things that hurt their work if they want their work to have a chance to be the best it can be.

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