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    Poem Rising Five Essay (1021 words)

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    Rising Five is a poem written by an English poet called Norman Nicholson. The poet wants to emphasize how life passes so promptly without us even taking notice. He portrays very evidently the life cycle since when we are born until after death. The poem makes clear that children have a different perception about life compared to adults. Adults don’t want time to pass because they don’t want to age whilst children can’t wait to grow up to be able to do what they crave in their life.

    Through this, Norman Nicholson manages to make comprehensible to the reader that people are never really satisfied with what they have, it will never be enough. Whenever they have something, they are already wishing something else thus they are constantly looking ahead, to the future and in consequence are dead because they don’t spend a moment to be grateful for what is around them, the present. The poet has been able to convey his concern of people not living the present through the use of metaphors, symbolism, presenting imageries, using alliteration and comparison.

    The poem presents a lot of metaphors between nature and the human being. It shows how the human life cycle is not so different from a plant’s cycle. First the plant is a bud; is a newly formed leaf or flower that has not yet unfolded, the human just a baby; a small creature, still a new-born, with no power at all and has not discovered its function or whatsoever in the world. Then it becomes a flower; the period when it blossoms and is of great prosperity or productivity, representing the best age of the human; when he or she has nothing stopping him or her from doing anything, when there are no limits and there is everything for success to lead your path.

    Right after is the fruit; right after the ovary ripened it is created, it is developed after fertilization. The fruit time of humans’ life is when they are more mature with more responsibilities to take care of and when the person is more open-minded. The boy is characterized as more open minded at this time when the poet says that ‘And stem shook out the creases from their frills’. Then at last the plant rots; it enters a state of decay, decomposition symbolizing the end of life for humans followed by death.

    The first stanza describes the boy’s appearance and how his spectacles consist of thick lenses making him look like a serious little boy with brimful eyes staring like he knows everything about everything as if his life is already completed, there is nothing else left for him to learn in this world. I guess he is trying to look mature. There are end rhymes in this stanza (e.g.- said and head, hair and stare)

    The 2nd stanza has assonance and alliteration right on the second line: ‘bubbled and doubled; buds unbuttoned; shoot’. Again, more emphasize is put to the fact that the past and future shove the present by leaving no importance to it on the 5th line: ‘It was the season AFTER blossoming. BEFORE the forming of the fruit (…)’ he uses words such as after and before, giving no value to the state of now. The 2nd stanza represents the best phase of the human life and there are a lot of positive words present in this stanza. The word ‘and’ is repeated several times in a row, giving the sense of addition constantly. The ‘blossoming’ illustrates the freshness of new life.

    There is the repetition of sounds all over the 3rd stanza. The poet wants to highlight the fact that the boy is ‘not four, but rising five (…)’ to show that he wants more than anything to live the future and is only thinking about it. The repetition of sounds in this stanza is to enforce the idea that people don’t live the present like they should. I believe that when the poet said ‘And in the sky the dust dissected the tangential light’ he wants to make it more scientific to criticize the fact that we analyze things too much without stopping to appreciate the beauty of certain things just as it is. The mood of the poem is already getting another dimension here. The dust dissecting the tangential light is also a personification and alliteration. The 3rd stanza can be seen as the revolution time of the process when all the transformation is occurring. It is the transition between both times.

    The 4th stanza is when the mood totally changes. A simile is spotted on the first line: ‘We drop our youth behind us like a boy throwing away his toffee-wrappers’ He refers back to the toffee-candy: ‘Throwing away his toffee-wrappers.’ This shows the transformation has occurred and that the toffee-buckled cheeks of his childhood no longer exist and he doesn’t give more importance to it either, he just throw them away. He once again shows how aging happens so quickly that we don’t even observe: ‘We never see the flower, but only the fruit in the flower; never the fruit, But only the rot in the fruit’. The 4th stanza consists mostly of negative words and the word ‘but’ repeats itself showing negation. There are a few end rhymes such as end and dead. In the end of the poem he shows that life went by and when it is already too late we notice that the only thing on our minds that mattered was the past and the future, when we should have given a much bigger magnitude to what came in between, the present.

    In conclusion we can see that as the poem advances, the mood of the poem alters, as it gets more severe and profound, as well as more dark and close to reality; as it starts with a little boy just wanting to grow up, approximating the terrible and unavoidable death. To sum up, the poet is eager to show how people should care about their lives living like there should be no tomorrow since life flies by.

    This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

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    Poem Rising Five Essay (1021 words). (2017, Nov 14). Retrieved from

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