The Kite Poem by Harry Behn: Explanation and Analysis

About the Poem ‘Kite’

“Kite,” poem, penned by the talented poet Harry Behn, captures the essence of a kite’s journey, from the moment it takes flight to the whimsical challenges it faces. So, let us embark on this poetic adventure together.

“Kite” opens with a vivid image that instantly transports us to a bright blue sky. Behn’s words paint a picture of a brand-new kite, gleaming and full of promise. As it soars through the air, it performs acrobatic manoeuvres, diving and dipping with effortless grace. The kite’s tail snaps in the wind, adding to its majestic display.

The poet compares the kite to a ship with only a sail, gliding over the waves of wind. It climbs higher and higher, reaching the crest of a gust, and then appears to rest as the wind subsides. However, as the string slackens, the kite is reeled back in, patiently awaiting a new breeze to lift it up once again.

The poet beautifully encapsulates the joy and wonder of witnessing a new kite in flight. The bright blue sky becomes a backdrop for the kite’s radiant colours, capturing our imagination and filling us with awe. Behn’s repetition of the opening lines reinforces the initial brilliance of the kite’s presence in the sky.

But as the poem reaches its conclusion, a twist of fate befalls the kite. In a poignant turn, Behn describes the kite as a “raggeder thing” when it becomes entangled in the branches of a tree. No longer free to dance in the wind, the kite flaps helplessly, reminding us of the transient nature of its beauty.

With this heartfelt and evocative poem, Harry Behn takes us on a journey that celebrates the ephemeral joy of a new kite’s flight while reminding us of the vulnerability that comes with its entrapment. “Kite” invites us to appreciate the fleeting moments of beauty that grace our lives and the importance of resilience in the face of adversity.

Explanation of the Poem “Kite”

The poem “Kite” by Harry Behn vividly describes the experience of flying a kite, capturing both the exhilaration and the challenges that come with it.

The poem begins by highlighting the brightness of a new kite against the blue sky. It emphasizes the excitement and beauty of a kite when it is freshly launched into the air. The kite’s movements are likened to that of a ship, as it dives, dips, and snaps its tail, displaying its agility.

The poet describes how the kite soars like a ship with only a sail, riding the gusts of wind like waves. It climbs higher, reaching the crest of a gust, and then appears to rest momentarily as the wind subsides. This conveys the sense of freedom and control that the kite flyer experiences as they manipulate the string to manoeuvre the kite.

However, as the wind weakens, the string goes slack, and the kite starts descending. The poet illustrates the process of reeling in the string, a task that requires winding it back by hand. The anticipation builds as the poet describes running until a new breeze blows, symbolizing the hope for the kite to catch the wind once again.

The final stanza of the poem takes a somber turn. It portrays the kite as a “raggeder thing” when it gets stuck in the top of a tree and flaps helplessly on the string. The contrast between the bright, soaring kite and the tangled, trapped kite in the tree emphasizes the fragility and vulnerability of the kite’s fate. The poem captures the disappointment and frustration that can arise when the kite is no longer able to freely fly and is instead entangled and damaged.

In short,”Kite” by Harry Behn celebrates the joy and exhilaration of flying a new kite, while also acknowledging the risks and challenges that come with it. The poem explores themes of freedom, control, and the unpredictable nature of the wind, leaving readers with a bittersweet reflection on the fleeting nature of such experiences.

Critical Analysis of “Kite” Poem

“Kite” by Harry Behn is a simple and charming poem that explores the joy and beauty of flying a new kite, contrasted with the disappointment and frustration when it becomes entangled and trapped in a tree. The poem effectively captures the exhilaration of launching a kite and the subsequent disappointment when it becomes inaccessible.

The poem begins with a vivid description of the kite against the blue sky, emphasizing its brightness and the excitement it brings. The imagery of the kite’s movement is well-crafted, as it dives, dips, snaps its tail, and soars like a ship with only a sail. This creates a sense of freedom and grace, as the kite glides effortlessly through the air. The poet also skilfully uses enjambment to create a sense of fluidity and mimic the motion of the kite itself.

The poem then highlights the kite’s interaction with the wind. It climbs to the crest of a gust, displaying the kite’s ability to harness the power of the wind and ascend to great heights. The moment of rest when the wind falls further emphasizes the dynamic relationship between the kite and the wind.

However, the tone shifts in the second stanza as the poem moves from celebrating the kite’s beauty to lamenting its unfortunate fate. The kite becomes trapped in a tree, described as a “raggeder thing.” This abrupt contrast in imagery serves to emphasize the disappointment and the sense of loss. The poem effectively captures the feeling of seeing something once vibrant and alive reduced to a helpless and tattered state.

The ending of the poem reinforces the theme of the kite’s entrapment. The image of the kite flapping on a string in the top of a tree evokes a sense of sadness and frustration. The reader can empathize with the narrator’s disappointment and share in their longing for the kite to be set free.

We can say that “Kite” is a bittersweet poem that captures the fleeting joy of flying a new kite and the subsequent disappointment when it becomes entangled and inaccessible. The poem effectively uses vivid imagery and contrasting tones to convey the emotions associated with the experience. It serves as a reminder of the transient nature of happiness and the inevitability of disappointment in life.

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