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Joyce Kilmer

(1886-1918 / New Jersey)

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Trees


I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002
Edited: Monday, April 29, 2013

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271 person liked.
28 person did not like.

Read poems about / on: tree, poem, snow, summer, rain, hair, god

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  • Gold Star - 33,497 Points Aftab Alam Khursheed (12/12/2014 10:38:00 AM)

    Tree the real offspring of earth and it is a poem - A tree that looks at God all day, And lifts her leafy arms to pray; Love the most lovely (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 13,680 Points Gangadharan Nair Pulingat (12/12/2014 7:56:00 AM)

    Of all the poems about the tree I think this is much impressive and better observing the importance of tree in a different side views. A trees hungry mouth is prest..... and........Against the earth's sweet flowing breast... wonderful imagination and to be appreciated in that spirit of poem. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 385 Points Willian Menuci (12/12/2014 5:40:00 AM)

    Just love it.
    But I must say, yes, perhaps God can make a tree, but only us, humans, can make love.
    You can't find love on nature, you can find anything else, just as sympathy, hope and peace, but love, love is a human's thing. (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,826 Points Rajnish Manga (12/12/2014 4:12:00 AM)

    This personification of a tree has been done remarkably well. You have rightly said that the tree is created by God and hence it is above all man made things. I like the poem. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 496 Points Michael Hagwood (12/11/2014 6:48:00 PM)

    Its a nice poem, I don't think your being foolish by posting a poem;

    if I had felt foolish I would have just read The Raven (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,953 Points Walterrean Salley (9/18/2014 5:08:00 AM)

    How I love this poem. Quoting it as I'm typing this comment. Kilmer finds a tree to be such a magnificent part of creation, while duly placing the credit where it belongs. To God. Thank you Mr. Kilmer for this beautiful gem. (Report) Reply

  • Bronze Star - 6,718 Points * Sunprincess * (6/17/2014 9:22:00 PM)

    .........this is real poetry....this poem has always been my favourite ever since I was a small girl......trees are very special..... in order to save the planet.....we need to save our trees... (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 119 Points Valentin Savin (3/23/2014 9:23:00 AM)

    I never mind what is said here about methaphors, meter, rhymes. But I find the poem interesting and to my loving and I'll try to translate it into Russian. More so, that this poem has not been translated into any other language yet. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 2,096 Points Wahab Abdul (12/12/2013 1:17:00 AM)

    the poem is notable for its use of personification and anthropomorphic imagery: the tree of the poem, which Kilmer depicts as female, is depicted as pressing its mouth to the Earth's breast, looking at God, and raising its leafy arms to pray. The tree of the poem also has human physical attributes—it has a hungry mouth, arms, hair (in which robins nest) , and a bosom. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 752 Points Tony Karas (12/12/2012 9:55:00 PM)

    Sublimely beautiful and so simple... real elegance with words. No wonder she's a master! (Report) Reply

Read all 57 comments »

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