What do you think this quote means or what can I say about it?I'm using the quote below for an essay about how tree's grow and change through experinces like humans. (The essay is about the...

What do you think this quote means or what can I say about it?

I'm using the quote below for an essay about how tree's grow and change through experinces like humans. (The essay is about the symbolism of the tree in the book Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson)

God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand tempests and floods.  But he cannot save them from fools.  ~John Muir

I know what it means but I want to relate it to humans or like what can I write about it because I am including it in my introduction paragraph and I need to explain it.

 

Asked on by jb4life

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Interesting Muir quote and even more unique being able to tie it to Anderson's work.  I think you would want to focus on the second part of the quote.  The idea that individuals must understand that while nature can be cruel, it is second only to the cruelty that human beings perpetrate upon one another is profound.  There is something that "speaks" towards what Anderson might be driving in such an element.  Keeping this in mind, the first part of the quote deals with the idea of nurturing and protecting growth.  With both of these notions in hand, I think that you can focus on how Melinda has grown throughout the course of the novel as a part of this.  In the end, the cruelty that her colleagues and many others in her world show towards her would have destroyed the growth of other people.  Yet, her own notion of being able to "speak" is what ends up insulating her from the foolishness of others.  When we consider what the Art teacher said about, "You have a lot to say," we realize that Muir's quote is especially profound.  There is no absolute guarantee that voices will always be heard.  Rather, individuals have to fight to be heard, they must rise above the foolishness of which Muir speaks.  Melinda understands this and it is through her embrace of this that she is able to "speak" and be heard.

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