This composition is a sonnet with a abab rhyme structure. Rich Wilbur had written this poem to define aesthetic characteristics of nature. “Obscurely yet most surely called to compliment, As sometimes summer season calls us all, I said The hills are heavens filled with branching ways Where star-nosed moles fly over head the dead… ” A lot of ambiguity is present initially.
I actually believe the initial few lines should be construed literally: the explaining of nature during the summer. “Where star-nosed moles take flight overhead the deceased; I said the trees are mines in air. I actually said See how the sparrow burrows above! And then I wondered why this mad instead… Because I construed the poem literally, I assumed moles are present during the summer, so Wilbur does this mention. When the speaker states that trees are like mines in the air, they really are like mines in the air. Mines depict some explosion. The leaves and branches of a tree protrude arbitrarily in the air from its foundation. The next half of the stanza, the author is criticizing the those who appear so unsuspecting, so amazed at nature when they shouldn’t. I think he believes we focus ourselves on things besides nature leading to our sight of nature to appear new and surprising when in fact, it should not.
The speaker uses italics and questions the reader for effect in order to convey his criticism. All of us are surprised that trees grow green, moles burrow, and sparrows fly because we do not see these things often according to my interpretation of the speaker’s discussion. Personally, this is true. If We were to see a computer I would not be surprised due to my frequent exposure to this; however, if We actually would be to see a mole burrowing, this would surprise personally because obviously We actually do not see nearly all of these animals often.