Pontheolla T. Williams: On "The Dogwood Trees"
"The Dogwood Trees" is faintly reminiscent of Whitman's Calamus poems in its use of phallic symbols, especially trees, and the male comradeship theme. The dramatic action in this poem is set against the backdrop of violence that took place in this country during the sixties. As the speaker and his companion drive to their rendezvous, they do so with "bitter knowledge" of the "odds against comradeship." Nonetheless determined, they "dared and were at one." The note of ambiguity introduced by the phrase "crooked crosses flared" cautions against a too-strict promotion of the Whitman-like theme. Given the violent backdrop and the tenor of black-white relations, the implication would be different.
|Title||Pontheolla T. Williams: On "The Dogwood Trees"||Type of Content||Criticism|
|Criticism Author||Pontheolla T. Williams||Criticism Target||Robert Hayden|
|Criticism Type||Poet||Originally Posted||14 Jun 2020|
|Publication Status||Excerpted Criticism||Publication||Robert Hayden: A Critical Analysis of His Poetry|
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