Please write an explication of Tara by Windy R White?I’ve often thought of her asa rosebud frozen in infancydelicate petals of creamtinged with pale pinkperfect in symmetrykissed by the first...

Please write an explication of Tara by Windy R White?

I’ve often thought of her as
a rosebud frozen in infancy
delicate petals of cream
tinged with pale pink
perfect in symmetry
kissed by the first frost
that selfishly captured her only bloom.
I’ve often thought of her as
a hummingbird suspended in flight
miniature but magnificent
tiny wings flapping feverishly
slowly sucking the sweet nectar.
Glance at her beauty quickly because
like a puff of wind, she’ll be gone.
I’ve often thought of her as
my first-born, nursing from my breast
fragile and helpless.
Eight years old, soon to be a memory
fighting against a fearless force
where, like a game strategically played,
death became the victor.
by Wendy R. White
From page 58 of the Spring 2001 printing of Echoes and Images

Asked on by cbmills

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booboosmoosh | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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In Wendy Wright's poem entitled, "Tara," the speaker (poet?) is describing a child who dies young. The memories this mother has of her daughter are caught in the beautiful, delicate and awe-inspiring imagery that the author uses to describe the child.

Imagery is the use of any literary devices that create a picture in the reader's mind.

First the poet (speaker) compares the little girl to a rose, small, beautiful, and perfect: this is the only rose that will bloom from this bush, captured by an early frost (death) which freezes the image of the child in time, and in memory.

Personification is a literary device whereby human characteristics are given to non-human things.

Nature is personified here in:

the rosebud...kissed by the first frost
that selfishly captured her only bloom

(Personification is specifically seen in the verb "kissed" and the adverb "selfishly.")

The sense of a frozen instant is present in this first section like that of a photograph which captures a moment in time, and in that picture, time stops moving forward, though life does not.  This is also seen in the next section.

The second section also uses imagery from nature to describe Tara:

I’ve often thought of her as
a hummingbird suspended in flight
miniature but magnificent...
like a puff of wind, she’ll be gone.

The hummingbird, if you're quick enough to know what you're seeing and sit very still trying to memorize this amazing creature, thrusts one of nature's marvels before our eyes; we blink and find nature's "supersonic pilot" gone. This depiction imparts the amount of time the speaker had with Tara: all too quickly, she was no longer there.

In the final section of the poem, the author (perhaps appropriately in that she is discussing life in terms of this amazing child) uses the metaphor of those last days in the playing of a game. However, where games often are accompanied by laughter and jubilation, the "winner" of this game is much darker.

Eight years old, soon to be a memory
fighting against a fearless force
where, like a game strategically played,
death became the victor.

Words here that support the image of a game are: strategically, played and victor.

The mother recalls her early days, nursing her firstborn child who was "fragile and helpless," but these words seem to still apply eight years later. The child fights against a "fearless force" (illness, death) that is much stronger than she.

Images of nature abound in this poem, seemingly to draw the reader's eye to the wondrous beauty of the child who dies too soon. These images include words and phrases as follows: rosebud, delicate petals of cream, perfect symmetry, frost, bloom, hummingbird, and puff of wind.

The clause: "miniature but magnificent / tiny wings flapping feverishly" gives a sense of living life quickly, trying to do as much as possible, in a short time; and "feverishly," while meaning "quickly" may also refer to the illness that afflicts the child.

Though the sadness of the child's death is evident, the beauty captured in nature's images, bequeath to the reader the lovely essence of Tara, as seen by her mother; and in this, the child lives on.

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