The poem Childhood is the Kingdom Where Nobody Dies, is written in open verse. It has no particular rhyme scheme and does not have any parameter.
I was able to locate a couple of metaphors. In line 3 when she writes, “Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies” (3). Also in line 30 she writes, “To be grown up is to sit at the table with people who have died” (30). I do not feel that Edna wrote this poem with much thought of rhyme schemes and iambicpentameter. Rather I think she wrote this poem out of a deep feeling she had inside her. Sometimes feelings can loose there meaning if you don not express them just the way they feel.
I believe that is the case in this poem. This is a case where Edna just wanted to express a feeling excactly the way it felt inside of her.To me, this poem comes across as a depressing relalization of no no longer having the innocents the being a child provides.I think Edna must have experinced a tragic loss of someone in her life who meant a great deal to her.
I also think that she wishes she had spent more time with this person, or at least enjoyed the time they spent together more.The first and second lines of this poem are very true. “Childhood is not from birth to a certain age and at a certain age the child is grown and puts away childish things” (1,2).
I think what Edna is trying to express is that when you reach a particular age you don’t just start being an adult. Being an adult is not something you just wake up one day an decide to be. In the third and fourth lines she writes, “Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies. Nobody that matters, that is” (3, 4).
I feel she is stating here that the chid is inoocent from adult feelings. When your a child death does not have a real meaning to you. She writes, “mothers and fathers don’t die” (22), and for that matter brothers and sister do not either. When you are young death does not seem to have a impact unless it happens to someone that is in your immediate family. She even writes of the impersonal relationships that a child has with relatives.
You can imagine how if the relative died the child might not even notice.In lines 9 through 16 Edna writes about how a child might first encounter death first hand when the family cat dies. But the way she writes, ” You fetch a shoe-box, but it’s much too small, because she won’t curl up now: So you find a bigger box” (13, 14), makes the experince seem so cheesey. She follows up with this thought when she writes, “But you do not wake up a month from from then, two months, a year from then, two years, in the middle of the night and weep, with your knuckles in your mouth, and say Oh, God! Oh, God!” (17-20). At this point in the poem you begin to relalize that Edna must have lost someone close to her.
These feelings are those written by someone who has first hand experince of what it is like to miss someone who is dead.In lines 23 through 29 I think that Edna is expressing some kind of remorse for not having enjoyed the time she spent with the person who passed away. She writes, “Tomorrow, or even the day after tomorrow if you’re busy having fun, Is plenty of time to say, “I’m sorry, mother”” (27-29). I began to wonder at this point if it was Edna’s mother who died, or if she wrote those lines to make death seem more real to the readers. I think either way, it’s a point well taken by myself.Lines 30 through 43 show the stark contrast between childern and adults.
Edna gives a few examples of how adults become more passive to everyday happenings that childern or even teenagers would get excited about. A terrific example of this for childern is when she writes, “Run down into the cellar and bring up the last jar of rasberries; they are not tempted” (34, 35). You can imagine how a youngster might react if you brought him some sweets; how it feels for that child to recive such a wonderful thing like the “last jar of rasberries” (34). You can also relalize how the last jar of rasberries must not seem like much to someone who has lost a loved one to death.
In lines 36 through 39 she writes, “Flatter them….
..they are not taken in” (36-39). From personal experince I know the effects of flattery on people. But Edna is saying that someone striken with grieve will not be phased by flattering remarks.The last three lines of this poem make me feel very empty inside.
She writes, “Your tea is cold now. You drink it standing up, And leave the house” (44-46). I feel like she can not even enjoy a simple cup of tea.
Just how she says the tea is cold and she is drinking it standing up makes me feel like she can no longer enjoy the simple things life has to offer. The way Edna describes an adult, or maybe herself, who has experinced the death of someone close to them is very morbid. When she writes about the difference between them and childern I think she get’s a bit on the gloomy side.
She makes it seem like the person who has experinced such an event can no longer feel any emotions. This is very evident in lines 30 through 43. I must say that this poem is very depressing to me. Although the first time I read the poem I did not find much meaning to it.
After reading it a few times I began to feel what Edna must have felt, emptiness.