Essay about The Curse of the Orange Tree and the Artist

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The Curse of the Orange Tree and the Artist

"In a Green Night" by Derek Walcott is a poem about the conflicting feelings of life. "In a Green Night" focuses on the ever-present threat of death, and how our lives revolve around the inevitability of death. Through metaphors, paradoxes, and repetition, Walcott exemplifies the hopelessness and glory that occur when an artist realizes that, in his quest for creating the perfect piece of art, he is ultimately growing closer to death--just as an orange tree grows closer to death as it produces its magnificent fruit. The key to "In a Green Night" lies in the metaphor that Walcott uses; human thought and creativity are compared to an aging orange tree. An orange tree produces oranges just
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Although "green" appears to be the opposite of how nighttime would be explained, this description does in fact make sense. Walcott shows in the title that something can be green (full of life) and dark (close to death) at the same time. As an artist yearns to produce the ultimate piece of art; as he created art in what seems to be his prime, he is growing closer and closer to death. An artist begins to fear that he will never produce the ultimate piece of art. Along with the title, "In a Green Night," Walcott uses other paradoxes to exemplify the meaning of the poem. Walcott writes: "She has her winters and her spring,/Her moult of leaves, which in their fall/Reveal, as with each living thing, zones truer than tropical" (5-8). The paradox in these lines is the opposites, winter and spring. Winter connotates a world full of hopelessness and despair. Spring connotates a world full of hope and prosperity, since spring is full of color and life. The connection between these two seasons comes from the orange tree that appears as the main subject of the poem. The orange tree matures throughout the summer, appearing to thrive in tropical season only, yet the orange tree blooms in November--near the beginning of winter. As the tree begins to produce luscious fruit, it begins to wilt and die at the same time. In the bleakest time of the year the orange tree begins to live; by the time the happiest time of the year

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