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Evaluation of Birches The discursive blank-verse meditation "Birches" does not centre on a continuously encountered and revealing character scene; instead, it assembles a mosaic of thoughts from fragments of memory and dream. Its own vividness and genial, bittersweet speculation help make it one of Frost's most well-known poems, and because its shifts of metaphor and tone invite varying interpretation it's also received much critical conversation, not necessarily admiring. The poem goes back and forth between two visual perspectives: birch trees as evidenced by boys' playful moving and from ice storms, so the thematic interweaving being slightly perplexing. The birches flexed "throughout the lines of straighter darker trees" subtly present the theme of imagination and will opposing darker lands. Then, nearly a third of the poem describes the way ice storms bend these trees permanently, unlike the action of boys; this scene unites images of beauty and of distortion. Ice cubes suggest radiating color and light, and the trees bowed into the degree of their bracken, suggest suffering, which is immediately lighte...