I recently read a poem written by Marjorie Baldwin. This poem talks about a teacher, giving a lesson to the class on the primrose – a small plant with flowers that are pale yellow in colour. All students were pulling the petals of the flower off to look inside, except the author. He realized that if he did the same as everybody else, the primrose will not be a primrose anymore. It will only be bits and pieces. He found out that it doesn’t matter anymore what’s going on inside the flower if we cannot keep it alive. So the author will look over his neighbour’s flower, while leaving his primrose whole. He tries not to pull the flower into pieces, unless the teacher comes and tells him to do so. Time goes by and nobody really notices.
In the last line of the poem, it says “In the flower left breathing on my desk”. Personification is used. It makes the text feel more alive and vibrant, making it more interesting and engaging to the reader. It furthermore enhances the theme, and shows the vivid image of the primrose.
Imagery is used too in the poem. There are quite a lot of description to how the primrose looks like. We can take a look at line 4 in stanza 1. It provided a lot of details to the flower, such as “five petals”, “heart-shaped”, “pale green calyx”, “hairy stem”, “a little knob – that is the pistil”, “the bunch of stamens”. The use of imagery evokes the visual response from the reader. By using a few descriptive words, the reader now has a better characterization of the primrose.
The poem tells us solely that we should not harm plants and flowers. But I don’t think the idea that the author is trying to give is limited to just plants and flowers. It’s about the big thing – nature conservation. People nowadays care little about the nature. They don’t understand the importance of it. To preserve nature means to maintain, to protect the nature. Humans depend on nature for survival. It is our home. If we don’t protect it, it will be a catastrophe beyond human imagination. Horrible problems will rise, like global warming. People will not be able to enjoy the benefits, the beauty, the wonder that nature brings to the hearts of people.