Friday, October 5, 2012

"Little Green" Analyses: POS

20 comments:

Seth Killingbeck said...

Contrasting sorrowful neglect with hopeful intentions in “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell utilizes naturalistic imagery, an anonymous point of view, and distinct characterization to convey the pains of loss through being “just a little green”.
In using images of natural phenomena, the narrator conveys a sense of naivety throughout the work. In particular, spring time occurrences that are depicted multiple times in the passage, the characters, being green “like the color when spring is born” reflects their inexperienced youth. The term “Green” itself can be used to describe an individual as inexperienced at a task. This applies to the new life of the child being born as well as the mistakes of the parents in their youth. Spring itself is a time when new life is grown from the soil, but in this case too, it could very well represent the growth of the various characters in the work. Going from “icicles and birthday clothes” to “when the spring is born” both characters grow from the winter of their youth into the spring of their lives. Instead of literally growing up like her child, however, the growth in the narrator’s character is in the form of deciding to give her child up for its own sake. The nature of the song reflects the nature of the people in it.
Phenomena aside, the anonymous point of view adds to the aforementioned theme of naivety. The narrator is speaking to a past version of herself and recalling the pain of having to give away her child. This gives an opening into the mind of the narrator as she endures the pains as well as how she views her decision at a later point in life. The narrator wants the child to forgive “the children who have made her” for having to give her up. This again reinforces the naivety of the characters by the narrator calling her and her partner children themselves. Feeling like a “child with child pretending”, the narrator decides that she should give up the child for a better life, acknowledging her naivety. Looking back on this she remembers how she is “sad and sorry, but not ashamed”. She looks back on this situation as the one good thing that came of her inexperience. She acknowledges that she was inexperienced and that her life decision was for the best.
Just as much nature and point of view affects the presentation of the song, the characterization of the family involved. The father, the mother, as well as the daughter are all given character within the text. The father went to California “hearing that everything’s warmer there”. This portrays him as a coward who cannot stick with the mother and his daughter. Things are “warmer” because he is far away from his issues and cannot live with his irresponsible mistakes. The daughter is given an image of innocence as she lives the life of a normal and happy little girl. The mother herself is generally naïve and has a heavy conscience. She is “weary of the lies” that she tells her family about the child. She is weighed down by the whole event and learns about making mistakes this early on in life. The characters all show their innately inexperienced nature through their actions.
People often must learn from their mistakes in varying degrees. Those who are as young as the spring must learn from the mistakes of others. Others must look for the good that came from their mistakes as they observe growth within themselves based on how they handle their situation. Some are not aware of how poorly or greatly they have reacted until much later in life. The only way to make it out of youth into maturity is to learn, whether it be about oneself or others.

Jamie Weaver said...

Shifting point of view throughout “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell utilizes naturalistic imagery, revealing characterization, and earthy personification to reveal the underlying idea that life can be filled with joyful moments, but “sometimes there’ll be sorrow”.

Incorporating vivid descriptions within the song creates a clear naturalistic image. Mitchell begins with strong imagery in “Born with the moon in Cancer” which is meant to describe the astronomical time when a baby was born, but also contains prominent nature based imagery. Comforting imagery is also found toward the end of the song referencing thoughts of childhood and happiness like in the line “there’ll be icicles and birthday clothes”, which are typically joyful memories from one’s childhood.

Characterization of the child’s father in the song is important to the development of the universal idea that “sometimes there’ll be sorrow”. “He went to California, Hearing everything’s warmer there” and left his child before she was even born. The mother of the child had no way of taking care of her daughter and gives her up for adoption. The progression of this characterization of the father helps support the story within the song.

Personifying earthy elements consistently throughout “Little Green” enhances the feeling of the naturalistic imagery. Both devices play off one another to create an intense connection to nature in the song, which also ties into the birth of the child, “born with the moon in Cancer”. The personification of seasons and the Northern Lights also strengthen the nature feel in the song. By utilizing many instances of nature being personified, the focus of the song is put on the connection between the beauty of nature and the beauty of the child.

Joni Mitchell’s use of naturalistic imagery, earthy personification, and revealing characterization reveal the idea that throughout one’s life, there will be enjoyable moments and there will be unpleasant moments. “Little Green” tells the story of a mother who has no choice but to give her daughter up for adoption, and the song is meant to convey to the child that although she will encounter many difficult things in life, she is blessed and her life can be very successful.
Jamie Weaver

Natasha Merianos said...

Shifting from the point of view of second person to third person in "Little Green," Joni Mitchell utilizes naturalistic imagery, a sorrowful mood, and tragic personification to portray that no matter what one goes through, even if there is happiness in one's life and joyful times, "sometimes there'll be sorrow." This poetic song portrays such things because Joni Mitchell wrote this song to her daughter, who she gave up for adoption due to lack of a father for the baby and lack of income because she was so young.
Joni Mitchell uses naturalistic imagery, a sorrowful mood, and tragic personifcation to portray the horrific decision that she had to undergo at such a young age. Although the song-writer experienced tough times, she handled the situation extremely well. Her marginally decent decision to give up her baby may have been a brutal decision, but she executed it well.
Although she turned the tragic and and negative aspects of her decisions and later became quite wealthy and happy with her life, there was always that negative thought of adoption in the back of her mind. Joni Mitchell turned out really happy and satisfied with her life. Also, she finally got the opportunity to meet her daughter, the one she gave up for adoption.

Beck Gerritsen said...

Beck Gerritsen
A Block Poetry of Song
10/5/12
“Little Green” Song Analysis
Transitioning between second and third person point of view in “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell uses naturalistic simile, astronomical personification, and verdant imagery to tell the story of a “child with a child” with mixed feelings over the loss of the newborn child she was unable to support.
Joni Mitchell uses naturalistic simile to describe “Little Green”. She uses lines such as, “Like the nights when the Northern lights perform,” and “Like the color when the spring is born,” to portray the beauty of the child who was lost. The ability to see the joy and wonder in the child’s pleasant times helps the listener to sympathize with Joni and builds the bittersweet mood of the song. These happy times tell of how the songwriter hopes for a better future for her daughter than what she could provide.
Joni also uses astronomical personification in “Little Green”. Lines like “Born with the moon” draw the listener in and make them understand not just the literal meaning, but also the emotional undertones. She needs to convey a deeper and more touching personal connection to the reader in order to avoid indifference from the listener. Personification becomes a hook in the first line. She draws attention, using the line like a newspaper headline to make the listener pay attention.
Lastly, Joni uses verdant imagery to paint a vibrant portrait of her experiences as a young adult. She uses happy imagery like, “There’ll be icicles and birthday clothes” to explain that she only wants the best for her child, and will go to any means to achieve that goal, even if it means personal sacrifice. Quotes like “There’ll be crocuses to bring to school tomorrow” and “Call her green and the winters cannot fade her” are a brilliant display of color and season that can portray a vivid picture in the listener’s mind. She uses these to draw the listener in and provide a mood for her audience to feel. Jodi also uses sad imagery. Lines such as “So you sign all the papers in the family name,” give the listener a colorful taste of the buffet of crippling sorrow and grief that any mother would feel at having to give away their child. Her imagery is a case of duality that wonderfully explains her mixed feelings in the difficult situation she faces.
In conclusion Joni Mitchell uses simile, personification, and imagery in “Little Green” to provide a lyrical hook, display her dichotomous feelings, and help the listener to sympathize with her complicated feelings.


HannahLab said...

Hannah Labonte
10/5/12
Poetry of Song “Little Green”
A

Contrasting the bitter hardships of teen pregnancy and the beauty of birth, in “Little Green” Joni Mitchell utilized verdant imagery, second person point of view, and intricate personification to convey that although times are tough “Little Green” can in fact, still have a happy ending.
Joni Mitchell has a way of showing her naturalistic images throughout the lyrics and her words. Joni Mitchell shows verdant imagery a lot throughout this song. In the verses “Just a little green” “Like the nights when the Northern lights perform”. This is showing a nature imagery of something that you can picture in your mind. She demonstrates a good example of how the nights look when the northern lights are performing. She relates this to her daughter “Little Green”. She indicates that she wants her daughter to shine bright like the Northern Lights.
Second point of view is demonstrated throughout the song “Little Green” as well. Joni has an odd, yet incredible way of speaking to herself in second point of view. In the verse “Choose her a name she will answer to”. She is speaking of how she will have to name her daughter and send her off. .” He sends you a poem and she’s lost to you” “Little Green, he’s a non-conformer”. She is not only speaking to herself in second person, she is speaking to Little Green. She also uses second point of view when talking to others. In the verse “So you write him a letter and say, “Her eyes are blue”. Joni is using second point of view to direct that verse at the man who helped her create the child without directly saying his name.
Joni Mitchell also has good use of giving inanimate objects life and a realistic image. She uses a lot of intricate personification to do so. In the verse “Northern lights perform” Joni is using personification to make the Northern lights perform. The Northern lights cannot really perform; therefore it would be a use of personification. In the verse “spring is born” Joni is trying to explain that the month spring has arrived. Spring cannot really be “born” so that would make it a good use of personification.
Joni Mitchell does a very good job of writing about a very serious and touchy subject without giving away too much information. Joni explains the tough situation that occurred in her life throughout different symbols and different uses of imagery. The meaning of this song is that you shouldn’t take on more than you can handle. Joni Mitchell speaks of how she is not ashamed of how she had to abandon her child and how it was the right thing to do. People who are poor and cannot afford to take care of their child and can’t give them the proper attention should most likely give them up. Joni Mitchell shows how she did the right thing. Though she wants the best for her daughter and she is saddened by her decision, she does not regret it. She supports this in the lines “You’re sad and you’re sorry, but you’re not ashamed” “Little green, have a happy ending”.

HannahLab said...

Hannah Labonte
10/5/12
Poetry of Song “Little Green”
A

Contrasting the bitter hardships of teen pregnancy and the beauty of birth, in “Little Green” Joni Mitchell utilized verdant imagery, second person point of view, and intricate personification to convey that although times are tough “Little Green” can in fact, still have a happy ending.
Joni Mitchell has a way of showing her naturalistic images throughout the lyrics and her words. Joni Mitchell shows verdant imagery a lot throughout this song. In the verses “Just a little green” “Like the nights when the Northern lights perform”. This is showing a nature imagery of something that you can picture in your mind. She demonstrates a good example of how the nights look when the northern lights are performing. She relates this to her daughter “Little Green”. She indicates that she wants her daughter to shine bright like the Northern Lights.
Second point of view is demonstrated throughout the song “Little Green” as well. Joni has an odd, yet incredible way of speaking to herself in second point of view. In the verse “Choose her a name she will answer to”. She is speaking of how she will have to name her daughter and send her off. .” He sends you a poem and she’s lost to you” “Little Green, he’s a non-conformer”. She is not only speaking to herself in second person, she is speaking to Little Green. She also uses second point of view when talking to others. In the verse “So you write him a letter and say, “Her eyes are blue”. Joni is using second point of view to direct that verse at the man who helped her create the child without directly saying his name.
Joni Mitchell also has good use of giving inanimate objects life and a realistic image. She uses a lot of intricate personification to do so. In the verse “Northern lights perform” Joni is using personification to make the Northern lights perform. The Northern lights cannot really perform; therefore it would be a use of personification. In the verse “spring is born” Joni is trying to explain that the month spring has arrived. Spring cannot really be “born” so that would make it a good use of personification.
Joni Mitchell does a very good job of writing about a very serious and touchy subject without giving away too much information. Joni explains the tough situation that occurred in her life throughout different symbols and different uses of imagery. The meaning of this song is that you shouldn’t take on more than you can handle. Joni Mitchell speaks of how she is not ashamed of how she had to abandon her child and how it was the right thing to do. People who are poor and cannot afford to take care of their child and can’t give them the proper attention should most likely give them up. Joni Mitchell shows how she did the right thing. Though she wants the best for her daughter and she is saddened by her decision, she does not regret it. She supports this in the lines “You’re sad and you’re sorry, but you’re not ashamed” “Little green, have a happy ending”.

Zachary Freedman said...

Shifting from the soothing tone at the start of the song, to the sorrow filled aspirations towards the end in “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell separates hyperbolic imagery, “weary” allusions, loose characterization, and brave confessions to portray her lonesome love for her fatherless child.
In the song “Little Green” Joni Mitchell does a fantastic job of hiding the universal meaning behind her voice, and the dramatic lyrics. In her lyrics it is fairly hard to define the idea without former knowledge of Joni’s life. Her Hyperbolic dreams of meeting her child (when she is an adult) where almost unheard of at the time. But with her real life perseverance she made it possible. Joni also uses many different devices in the song such as allusion to portray her love, and respect for her child. One example of allusion was when Joni said “Her eyes are blue” referring to her child. These devices allow the reader/listener to be immersed in the entire experience of “Little Green”.
There are many defiant confessions that the author releases to the world, and her child in the song. She basically announces (between the lines) that she gave her daughter away when she was younger. This is a very personal situation that would take a lot of bravery to form into a song. That allows the theme of revealing dramatic events from her past to continue, such as how her “baby father” left after the baby was born. Joni doesn’t cease to amaze me as she releases information that most would want private. I envy her bravery and persistence in her writing that allows people to be saturated into her life.
The use of characterization in the song has a very broad span. She uses it loosely, meaning she alternates repeatedly, and incorporates multiple “people” inside the song. This helps Imply that there are more than one characters being portrayed within the lyrics. There is three easily noticeable characters in the story a him, her, and child. These characters are what make the integrity of the song, which is why characterization is so important. Without these defined characters you wouldn’t understand or be able to decipher the universal idea. It seems much more difficult to write a song with distinct characterization then without and for that I praise Joni Mitchell.
Joni Mitchell really grasps the way in which to allow her readers/listeners to understand her lyrics with full and intellectual insight. The song’s underlying meaning is clearly there, it is just hidden under the rough, variety of mosaic tones, in her voice, as well as the complex devices in the lyrics. The word brave would with hind-sight be an understatement of the immense will it would take to write a song with this much personal feelings, and heart portrayed within the lyrics of “Little Green”.

Zachary Freedman

Nicole Miller said...

Nicole Miller
“Little Green” analysis
Shifting from the description of a child to the loss of parenthood, Jodi Mitchell in “Little Green” utilizes naturalistic imagery, objective points of view, and a hopeful tone to show that good things can come of bad beginnings.
Through her use of naturalistic imagery, Joni is able to further convey her ideal that sorrow will present itself on occasion, regardless of the circumstances. When Joni utilizes naturalistic imagery, she is describing a scene in nature to the point where the listener is able to picture the scene in their head. Some instances of this imagery is “like the color when spring is born,” “there’ll be crocuses to bring to school tomorrow,” and “like the nights when the Northern lights preform, there’ll be icicles and birthday clothes tomorrow.” In all of these instances of imagery, some aspect of nature is shown. For instance, “like the color when spring is born” evokes the images of bright, vibrant colors and green grass filled with flowers, images that are typically associated with spring. Also, crocuses are flowers that emerge in the spring, further emphasizing the verdant nature of spring. Spring follows after the cold of winter, and begins with torrential rain. Through enduring the bad beginning of winter and drowning rain, the life and fresh start of spring can be enjoyed. Following suit, “like the nights when the Northern lights preform, there’ll be icicles and birthday clothes tomorrow” brings about the internal pictures of cold, snow-covered landscapes and green, vibrant lights. The Northern lights show across the North Pole region, where the landscape consists of a snow-tundra and bright, starry nights. The North Pole is frigid and desolate all year long, but the beauty of the Northern lights and starry nights can only be enjoyed in this region through enduring the cold long days. The aspect of birthday clothes follows along with the winter-like imagery because winter is about starting anew, and birthdays are about entering another stage in life, essentially starting fresh as well. Through enduring the struggles of the past year, one can start fresh when another comes along. Within these naturalistic instances of imagery, a hard start and struggle leads to the enjoyment of the spoils that follow.

Nicole Miller said...

PART 2
Nicole Miller
Joni only utilizes objective points of view, avoiding first person point of view to keep her emotions out of the picture. She suffered through hardships that resulted in the birth of her daughter, and does not want her emotions within this time to alter her telling of “Little Green’s” story. She speaks from both the second and third perspective, but never allows herself to tell her own story. Instances of Joni using the second person perspective include “call her green,” “choose her a name,” “so you write him a letter,” weary of lies you are sending home,” “so you sign the papers,” and “you’re sad and you’re sorry but you’re not ashamed.” By directing the actions at her listeners and speaking as though her actions were committed by the audience, she successfully utilizes the second point of view. She tells her audience to “call her,” and “choose her a name,” as well as stating actions that the audience preformed, like “ you write,” you are sending,” and “you sign.” This way, Joni is able to tell the story by acting as though the audience is herself, and remaining able to be objective through using her audience as a median. Through directing her actions at her audience, Joni is able to remove herself and her emotions from the song. Joni also uses third person point of view to avoid letting her emotions taint her story-telling. Examples include “he went,” “he sends” and “child with a child.” The actions stated are performed by a man and a child, thus allowing the story to be told by others rather than Joni. By using the bystander point of view as well as the third person perspective, she is able to avoid making the song more personal, and able to take on the role of an objective story teller.
The hopeful mood of the song also assists in her portrayal of the idea that good things can happen through tough beginnings. Hopeful, in and of itself, is the hope that something good will come of a bad situation. It happens in the face of hardship, and can evolve into good fortune. The use of a hopeful tone allows the listener to believe that something good is to come, and that the struggles of Joni’s life can result in something good for her child. Instances of particularly hopeful lines in the song include “be a gypsy dancer,” and “have a happy ending.” A gypsy is a person who is extremely free spirited, and lives their life exactly the way that they wish to. By wishing that her child is a gypsy dancer, Joni wishes that the child follows her dreams. Following suit, by wishing that she lives a happy ending, Joni hopes that she lives a good life and does not let the sorrow that occasionally occurs affect her from enjoying her life. Through the sadness of giving her child up for adoption, Little Green is able to live a far better life than she would have been able to with Joni and her limited recourses. Although she was given up, she was able to reunite with her parents and have a happy life. Through instilling hope into her song whilst telling the story of a struggle, she is able to allude to the theme that good things can come about from bad beginnings.
Throughout the song, the theme of fortune coming from struggles presents itself. Little Green was born under stressful conditions, but was able to grow up and lead a happy life, as well as be reunited with her parents. From Joni’s experiences, listeners can learn how they should not lose hope in the face of hardships, “regardless that “sometimes there’ll be sorrow,” as good things can come out of the worst situations.

Stee said...

Steve Schlehuber
Balancing between second and third person throughout the song, “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell utilizes naturalistic imagery, internal rhyme and seasonal simile to tell her painful story of putting her baby up for adoption because she was a, “child with a child”.
Joni Mitchell uses a lot of imagery in her song, “Little Green”. One line that contains imagery is, “so you write him a letter and say, “her eyes are blue.” This line is significant to the story being told because Joni is talking about writing a letter to the father of the baby. She is describing to him, what the baby looks like and the color of her eyes. Another instance in which imagery is used is in the line, “so you sign all the papers in the family name, you’re sad and you’re sorry, but you’re not ashamed”. This line is very upsetting because Joni is telling us about the struggle involved in signing her child over to the parents adopting her. Joni Mitchell does a great job of using imagery to portray the meaning of the song.
Joni Mitchell also utilizes the literary device, internal rhyme, throughout her song. There are only a few examples of internal rhyme in the song but one of them contains a lot of meaning. The line is, “child with a child pretending, weary of the lies you are sending home”. In this line she is saying that she could not take care of her newborn baby because she was a poor child herself. Also, in the second half of the line, she is saying that she was lying to her family about whether she had a child or not. Joni Mitchell uses internal rhyme very well to help reveal what her song actual means.
Joni Mitchell also places similes pertaining to the seasons in her song. One line containing a simile is, “like the color when the spring is born”. This simile compares the birth of her child to the coming of spring. When spring comes around, everything outside turns green and it looks like the world has been reborn. This simile most likely explains why she named the song “Little Green”. She then uses another simile in the line, “Like the nights when the Northern Lights perform”. The Northern Lights are also something that could represent life because they are bright and colorful. This simile seems to be comparing the Northern Lights occurring to the birth of her child. The words bright and colorful are often associated with new life. Joni Mitchell applies similes in her song to reveal the internal meaning.
In the song, “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell uses many literary devices including naturalistic imagery, internal rhyme and seasonal simile to exploit the internal meaning of the song, which was that she had a baby, could not raise it and had to put her up for adoption because she was a “child with a child”.

zack sicard said...

Zack Sicard
Little Green Essay
Transitioning between second to third person point of view in “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell utilizes raw characterization, naturalistic imagery, and polarizing mood to create distance between herself and having to “sign” the painful “papers” of adoption for her child; although, she knows adoption means “a happy ending” for the child.
The raw characterization used by Mitchell introduces us to Joni’s “non-conformer” baby daddy, and also to her past self. When writing to the adoptive parents about “Little Green” Mitchell alludes to herself and past boyfriend as “the children who’ve made her”. With the intention of explaining the choice that she had to make the author characterized herself as a “child with a child pretending”. In this case she need not be “ashamed” for making a wise decision. The characterization within the song feeds the reader pertinent information, and allows Mitchell to construe the accord she made earlier in life.
Working alongside the raw characterization that has been developed earlier on, Mitchell makes use of naturalistic imagery with the purpose of advising her daughter what is to come in her future. The author introduces “icicles and birthday clothes” as the good things that are to come in Little Green’s life. Immediately after the good things are introduced, Mitchell will also warn her daughter that “sometimes there’ll be sorrow”. She is explaining all these things in order for her daughter to be prepared for the life ahead of her. The naturalistic imagery helps the reader to better understand how much Mitchell cares about her child’s future.
The polarizing mood used throughout the song gives it both a sense of happiness and hardness. Mitchell leaves the reader in a good mood talking about her daughter and describing her as “the color when the spring is born”. She goes on to describe her daughter as a true beauty. The mood of the song changes when Mitchell speaks of having to put her child up for adoption. Mitchell feels “sad” and “sorry” but “not ashamed”. The mood within the song leaves the reader in a daze of a mother’s love for her daughter along with the realization that adoption is what’s best.
Mitchell uses many devices in order to convey the bitter sweet sadness she felt having to put her daughter up for adoption. The devices all tie into one another creating a lucid hope that Little Green will live a good life. The usage of raw characterization, naturalistic imagery, and polarizing mood leaves the reader with a strong sense of a mother’s love for her daughter.

zack sicard said...

Zack Sicard
Little Green Essay
Transitioning between second to third person point of view in “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell utilizes raw characterization, naturalistic imagery, and polarizing mood to create distance between herself and having to “sign” the painful “papers” of adoption for her child; although, she knows adoption means “a happy ending” for the child.
The raw characterization used by Mitchell introduces us to Joni’s “non-conformer” baby daddy, and also to her past self. When writing to the adoptive parents about “Little Green” Mitchell alludes to herself and past boyfriend as “the children who’ve made her”. With the intention of explaining the choice that she had to make the author characterized herself as a “child with a child pretending”. In this case she need not be “ashamed” for making a wise decision. The characterization within the song feeds the reader pertinent information, and allows Mitchell to construe the accord she made earlier in life.
Working alongside the raw characterization that has been developed earlier on, Mitchell makes use of naturalistic imagery with the purpose of advising her daughter what is to come in her future. The author introduces “icicles and birthday clothes” as the good things that are to come in Little Green’s life. Immediately after the good things are introduced, Mitchell will also warn her daughter that “sometimes there’ll be sorrow”. She is explaining all these things in order for her daughter to be prepared for the life ahead of her. The naturalistic imagery helps the reader to better understand how much Mitchell cares about her child’s future.
The polarizing mood used throughout the song gives it both a sense of happiness and hardness. Mitchell leaves the reader in a good mood talking about her daughter and describing her as “the color when the spring is born”. She goes on to describe her daughter as a true beauty. The mood of the song changes when Mitchell speaks of having to put her child up for adoption. Mitchell feels “sad” and “sorry” but “not ashamed”. The mood within the song leaves the reader in a daze of a mother’s love for her daughter along with the realization that adoption is what’s best.
Mitchell uses many devices in order to convey the bitter sweet sadness she felt having to put her daughter up for adoption. The devices all tie into one another creating a lucid hope that Little Green will live a good life. The usage of raw characterization, naturalistic imagery, and polarizing mood leaves the reader with a strong sense of a mother’s love for her daughter.

Andrew Morse said...

Andrew Morse
Block: A
Transitioning from her final goodbyes to her realization of her child's fate, in "Little Green" Joni Mitchell utilizes naturalistic figurative language, dichotomous mood, and innate characterization to show that "there'll be sorrow" before Little Green can "have a happy ending."

Throughout little green there is many references to nature and the environment. Even the title "Little Green" is a direct reference to nature. The imagery is almost all in relation to nature, "Call her green and the winters cannot fade her." Joni Mitchell isn't really going to name the child green she is just figuratively speaking and the imagery in the line relates back to the theme of spring and nature. There are also several other instances where figurative language is used; "Like the nights when the Northern lights perform." This line features personification because it is saying that the northern lights perform however the lights cannot do that for they are innanimate.

A unique feature of "Little Green" is the dichotomous mood. The mood starts out somewhat optomistic then transitions into a more sad and sorry mood. In the first verse the last line is "Little green, be a gypsy dancer." This is Mitchell's way of telling her child to do whatever she wants as long as it makes her happy. Later in the song the mood shifts, "He sends you a poem and she's lost to you", "You're sad and you're sorry but you're not ashamed. The subject matter shifts to Mitchell's realization of her child's fate which takes away her optimism.

Like any song "Little Green" possesses characterization. However ,unlike many songwriters and authors, Mitchell doesn't devote any part of her song to characterization. "Little Green" tells the story of Mitchell's daughter that she was too young to support and had to put up for adoption. There is an emotional narrative in "Little Green", especially for a short song. As one experiences the story the recieve all of the characterization they need at the same time. After hearing the song one could give a good description of Mitchell, her daughter "Little Green" and the father of her child who walked out on them.

"Little Green" is a deep and personal song for Mitchell. If one simpily listened to the song they might not have been aware of the true subject matter of the song. However with a thorough analysis one suddenly is aware of a dark and personal time in Joni Mitchells life. This realization is reserved for the attentive and those who can decipher the hidden literary devices packed throughout the song.

Allison Brooks said...

Shifting between hope and sorrow in the song “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell utilizes naturalistic imagery, prominent personification, and changing points of view in order to tell her daughter to “have a happy ending”.
Throughout the story, Joni Mitchell uses naturalistic imagery to express her feelings about given her new born daughter up for adoption. An example of this is when she says, “Like the nights when the Northern Lights perform.” In this statement, Mitchell is comparing her daughter to the beauty of the Northern Lights. She wants her daughter to know that she is beautiful. Mitchell also states in a letter to the child’s daughter that “her eyes are blue” in an attempt to guilt him into taking the girl. The use of naturalistic imagery is very important to the song and its overall meaning.
Joni Mitchell also uses prominent personification throughout the song. An example of this is when she says "when spring is born". By saying this, Mitchell is comparing her daughter to how it feels when spring arrives. But, by saying how spring is born, she also could also be saying that when her daughter was born, it gave the same feeling as the arrival of spring. “When the Northern Lights perform” is another example of personification. This is also an example of local color since she is from Canada and the Northern Lights are more common there. She is using the lights because of their green color and to make the connection between that and the name, Green. The use of personification in this song is another way for Mitchell to show her feelings for baby Green.
This son also utilizes varying points of view. The whole song appears to be like a letter to the new parents of her child. The first point of view she shares is her own. She is telling the adoptive parents to “choose her a name she will answer to.” She also explains what happens to the girl’s father saying “He went to California hearing that everything’s warmer there.” After the first chorus, Mitchell seems to be talking to herself when she says “Weary of the lies you are sending home.” By switching points of view, she is able emotionally detach herself from the song. A song like this would probably be hard to sing night after night. She makes it easier on herself by showing the situation through other people’s perspective.
Allison Brooks

jake hallgren said...

Shifting from second to third person point of view in "Little Green," Joni Mitchell uses naturalistic imagery, powerful repetition, and quiet personification to portray that she loves her child and "sometimes there'll be sorrow."

Joni Mitchell uses naturalistic imagery to show the world in away meant for a young child. Mitchell uses "color when the spring is born" to represent the birth of her child. What she means for that line to say in reality is "your birth was like the colors of spring, and most people will agree that spring is the best looking time of year because of all the colors. Also Joni says "like the nights when the Northern Lights perform" also to show that her child's birth was a great and beautiful thing to her. As you can now see Joni Mitchell was very creative with her naturalistic imagery.

The artist also uses powerful repetition to get it stuck in your head that this song has a deeper meaning than a regular listener would recognize. Throughout the song Mitchell rapidly repeats the words "Little green" to show the deeper meaning in those two words. The word little green is supposed to represent her child. The whole song is singing indirectly to her child, so she uses "little green" as her child. Throughout the song Mitchell uses her repetition to get across a deeper meaning.

Mitchell uses quiet personification to try to hint that the "little green" is a really a child. By Joni saying "Born with the moon in cancer" she is trying to say that a child was born during the spring time. She does hat because the song wouldn't be as interesting if she sand directly to her child. If she did the song directly to her child then she would use a lot more "you" and "i" which can completely ruin a song with the overuse of that couple words. That is how Joni uses personification throughout the song.

So as you can see Joni Mitchell's use of naturalistic imagery, powerful repetition and quiet personification to show that she loves her child and "sometimes there'll be sorrow."

Ashley said...

Ashley Boulos

Shifting from feelings of loss and loneliness to the proud emotion of doing the right thing in Little Green, Joni Mitchell utilizes verdant imagery, dual point of view, and melancholy tone to portray that even after tough times one can still have "a happy ending".

Joni Mitchell uses verdant imagery in Little Green to portray a very vivid description of her daughter. The verdant color, green, comes into play when she speaks of her daughter as being named "Little Green". She describes how this name reminds her of "the color when the spring is born". She uses imagery to allow the person listening to the song to envision her daughter in lines such as "her eyes are blue". Some other imagery is shown when she describes Little Green as being “Like the nights when the Northern lights perform”.

The song Little Green also shows dual point of view by talking about herself in the 3rd person instead of the 1st. She writes "you're sad and you're sorry, but you're not ashamed" referring to herself as your. Mitchell does this to put some space in between her and the song itself. Even though she speaks of herself as being not ashamed, the song still shows that she may have some regret. She also speaks not only of herself, but of her baby’s father who she refers to as he instead of his real name like when she says “He went to California”.

Joni uses melancholy tone to describe how she feels about the loss of her child. The tone used within the song is a sad and somber tone. She says "sometimes there'll be sorry" showing that even though she gave up her daughter Little Green for a good reason she will still feel sad that she was not capable of taking care of the child herself. The music that is played in the background of the lyrics is also melancholy it is slow, and quiet which goes along with the theme of struggle and loss.

Overall this song has a meaning that is relatable to many people who have gone through the same things as Joni. These literary devices help provide this meaning, and allow the main theme of the song to stand out through the ways she uses these devices. Imagery allowed us envision her daughter how Joni saw her in her own eyes, dual point of view showed us how Joni felt about the situation and her sense of regret, and tone makes us feel how Mitchell wanted us to feel when we listen to the song.

Matthew Litchfield said...

Matthew Litchfield
Wistfully shifting from 2nd to 3rd person point of view in “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell uses ambiguous characterization, dichotomous mood, and verdant imagery to separate herself from her past as a “child with a child.”

By not naming her daughter or her daughter’s father with explicit names, Mitchell separates herself from her past with them. She talks about the child’s father briefly, saying he went to California and calling him a “non-conformer.” While Mitchell casts an accusing light on the abandon of the father, she does it so indirectly and inexplicitly that it is as though she has forgiven him, or moved on from their shared past. In effect, Little Green becomes the subject of a memory that, while she sings about, is something she wishes to move on from. Through the ambiguous characterization of the father – and the conflicting emotions beneath those characters – Mitchell separates herself from her story. Mitchell generates further distance between her and her story by addressing the child’s adoptive parents, as if it were not her child at all.

Throughout “Little Green”, Mitchell expresses contrasting feelings of optimism for her child and sorrow for her loss. This contrast is clearest when she said she was sad and sorry, but not ashamed for signing the adoption papers for Little Green. In doing what was best for the child, she did would was most hurtful to herself: losing her daughter. Mitchell’s contrasting lines “there’ll be icicles and birthday clothes // and sometimes there’ll be sorrow” end the song, fortifying the duality of her emotions around the story. Mitchell tells first her daughter, and then herself, that there will be happiness and sorrow in life, but the distinction of address creates a divide between them.

The color green unifies the feelings Mitchell expresses throughout the song. “Little green” looks at the world through a verdant lens, highlighting both Mitchell’s desire for her daughter to live freely and her own shame in so naïvely conceiving her. The color green is invoked by parallels to the Northern lights and the crocuses of springs; the color green represents both things that glow and grow wildly, but also things that inevitably fade away. In saying that she wants little green to be a free spirit, Mitchell acknowledges the humanity of the story they share, while simultaneously diving their stories for the benefit of her daughter.

“Little Green” is an innately sorrowful song, but Mitchell strives to make the best of her situation. While she knows her situation was caused by folly, she knows her solution is ultimately best for her child. In light of this resolution, she distances herself from the story, giving ‘little green’ a chance to grow into her own vibrant crocus.

Levi Kahn said...

Shifting point of view throughout “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell incorporates longing imagery, wishful personification, and honest characterization to convey the underlying idea that doing the right thing in any situation, however hard it may be, is always better in the long run.
Utilizing longing, mournful descriptions of herself and her child within the song creates a clear image for the audience. Mitchell says, “There'll be crocuses to bring to school tomorrow”, which brings about the image of a happy young child in the springtime going to school. Throughout the song Mitchell incorporates longing imagery to describe the hardship that she went through by giving up her child when she knew that she had no other choice. She wishes her daughter the best, and hopes she will do well for herself, and Mitchell is very sad that she is not able to bring the child up herself.
Mitchell characterizes her daughter’s father in the second verse of the song. Essentially telling her daughter the story of who her father was, Mitchell says, “He went to California/Hearing that everything's warmer there.” Mitchell knows now that the daughter’s father was not a trustworthy man and left the family before the child was born. Mitchell is very harsh to him throughout the song, and the audience is led to feel anger towards him and sadness for the singer. Mitchell tells her daughter, as well as the audience, about the letter that she wrote the father, and how he never even got to see the baby. As painful as it must be to tell, Mitchell is very honest about the characterization of her daughter’s father.
Mitchell uses wishful personification in the song to describe her feeling of loss for her daughter and how much she wishes she could keep the daughter and raise her herself. “Call her green for the children who've made her” personifies her daughter and brings about the issue of bearing a child at such a young age. The singer makes it very obvious how much she longs to raise her daughter, but knows it is right for her to give it up.
Joni Mitchell’s use of longing imagery, wishful personification, and honest characterization tell the audience a story from her life, and convey a message directed at her daughter that no matter the situation, always do what you know is right. No matter how hard it may be at the time, doing the right thing will, for everyone involved, “have a happy ending”, just as Joni Mitchell and her daughter eventually had.

Ashley Liebherr said...

Little Green Analysis
Ashley Liebherr


Shifting between a regretful and hopeful tome throughout the song, “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell introduces naturalistic imagery, descriptive similes, and varied point of view to discuss the loss and adoption of her daughter whom she wants to “have a happy ending”
Throughout the song “Little Green”, the point of view shifts repeatedly between second and third person. One example of this is “Choose her a name she will answer to” She is talking about herself naming her daughter. Also, “There’ll be icicles and birthday clothes,” is telling her daughter what her life will be like. Last, she talks about the father, “He sends you a poem” This is from the father’s point of view because he still doesn’t come back. The point of view shifts repeatedly through the song.
In the song, other than varied point of view there are also descriptive similes. The first example of this is her comparing little green to the color of spring, “Just a little green/ Like the color when spring is born” this means her daughter is bringing her happiness. Next, she compares her little green to something beautiful, “Just a little green/ Like the nights when the Northern Lights perform” The Northern Lights are beautiful and unique so this is a compliment to her newborn daughter who she will soon be losing. The descriptive similes in this song are extremely prominent.
There are many poetic devices in this song, including descriptive similes and varied point of view, but perhaps the most important is the naturalistic imagery. One example of this is when the speaker is talking about a nameless character referred to as “He”. The speaker says, “He went to California/ Hearing everything was warmer there” You can imagine the warmth of this state as you read about it. Also, there is imagery within the smell and look of flowers. “There’ll be crocuses to bring to school tomorrow” Crocuses are a type of flower and you can imagine bringing them to school with the scent and sight. Last, the line is “So you sign all the papers in the family name” When reading this is your mind you can see someone signing the adoption papers giving their child to a new family. Naturalistic imagery is very obviously put into this song.
Within the song “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell demonstrates good use of naturalistic imagery, descriptive similes, and varied point of view to put her feelings of her daughter’s birth and adoption into a song. She uses strong examples of imagery that are usually related to nature scenes like the Northern Lights. Also, the similes used are very descriptive and she uses them to let the speaker of the song tell a story. Last, the point of view switches between second and third person throughout the song repeatedly to give strong examples of the feelings that are going on with the speaker. In the song “Little Green”, Joni Mitchell demonstrates good use of varied point of view, descriptive similes, and naturalistic imagery.

Twixxxxxxxx said...

Here's my Little Green. http://twixxxxxxxx.blogspot.com/2012/10/lg-analysis.html