Imagery and metaphors

The poem “Strange Fruit” by Abel Meeropol is filled with imagery and metaphors.

Table of contents

Imagery

Imagery (here understood as descriptive language to convey visual images) is present throughout the poem as each stanza conveys a different image.

In the first stanza, the poet uses descriptive words to help readers imagine the bloody bodies of black people hanging from trees:

Blood on the leaves and blood at the root,
Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze, (ll. 2-3)

In the second stanza, the imagery is oriented towards the look of their faces and is combined with sensory details related to the sense of smell:

The bulging eyes and the twisted mouth,
Scent of magnolias, sweet and fresh,
Then the sudden smell of burning flesh. (ll. 6-7)

In the third stanza, the imagery presents the bodies han...

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