Category Archives: e. e. cummings

“little tree”

“little tree”littlewatercolortree

 

little tree

little silent Christmas tree

you are so little

you are more like a flower

who found you in the green forest

and were you very sorry to come away?

See         i will comfort you

because you smell so sweetly

i will kiss your cool bark

and hug you safe and tight

just as your mother would,

only don’t be afraid

look          the spangles

that sleep all the year in a dark box

dreaming of being taken out and allowed to shine,

the balls the chains red and gold the fluffy threads,

put up your little arms

and I’ll give them all to you to hold

every finger shall have its ring

and there won’t be a single place dark or unhappy

then when you’re quite dressed

you’ll stand in the window for everyone to see

and how they’ll stare!

oh but you’ll be very proud

any my little sister and i will take hands

and looking up at our beautiful tree

we’ll dance and sing

“Noel Noel”

–e.e. cummings (1894-1962)

“little tree” was originally published in The Dial Vol. LXVIII No. 1  (Jan 1920).  New York: The Dial Publishing Company, Inc.

            Picture book renditions of this poem with original art work:

Little Tree by e.e. cummings; Illustrated by Deborah Kogan Ray.  Pub: 1987

Little Tree by e.e. cummings; Illustrated by Mary Claire Smith.  Pub date: 2000

Little Tree poem by e.e. cummings; Story and paintings by Chris Raschka.   Pub date: 2001

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e.e. cummings

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Poet and novelist, e.e. cummings, was born in Cambridge, MA in 1894 and died in 1962 in North Conway, New Hampshire.  He first began writing poems when he was in elementary school.  Later both his undergraduate and graduate studies at Harvard introduced him to advant garde writers who influenced him significantly.  Cummings became known himself for his “experimental” style that included a departure from traditional form, punctuation, spelling and syntax.

Sometimes criticized that eventually his poetry did not evolve beyond his experimental style, Cummings’ poems nevertheless captivated people, making him a fairly well known and popular poet during his lifetime.  He was the recipient of a number of honors and grants.

To commemorate today being Easter Sunday and the first few weeks of spring with the world in bloom, this is an e. e. cummings poem that carries with it that feeling of rebirth:

i thank you God for most this amazing

I thank You God for most this amazing
day: for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today, and this is the sun’s birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any–lifted from the no
of all nothing–human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)