The Tropics in New York is a suberb literary piece by Claude McKay. Claude was from the race of blacks and he worked in America in early 1920s when Harlem Renaissace was in effective. There were several reasons that forced him to write such type of poem. The first one is that he belonged to Jamiaca and he came in America at Kansas State College and he got better chances to understand the concept of racial issues which were prevailing here.
The readers have to like it due to its irony and the very poem represents Claude in the role of an angry man. In the poem the very entity of Claude is represented as helpless and lonely or without friends. The melancholic or sad attitude of Claude is due to racial issues which are being presented in the poem. The poem is a true representation of the difficulties faced by black people in gaining their full cultural identity in a white society. So due to the reason of cultural identity the people have to write poems like this one and they would have to consider these poems as a sort of compensation and their message to the prevailing community. The poem is depicting a sort of comparison between natural life and life in a civilized urban area. The poet has tried to his best to show that which one is a better and more powerful world. Claude is also depicting the plight of blacks in America and the sort of problems or implications which are bieng faced by black Americans.
In a first glance it is not easy to find out the issue of racial identity or descrimination rather one must have to see the poem as a life experience which is more sad, lonely and full of memoirs. As many people are arriving in America from different locations after getting immigration visa. When immigrants have to arrive in a new area then they have to long or wish to see their native places and think about the advantages which they have in their home county. As our dear poet Claude was from Jamiaca so he ever wanders about the fruits that are the property of Jamiaca or simply the fruits that simply grow in his native country. Mckay has tried his best to dig out the ambitions, of the immigrants, which are burried in their heart and mind. He has also depicted the sentiments of people who are living there for centuries. The peom is representing New York as a projection which means that like poet many people are living here as immigrants but still in their hearts and minds there are the memoirs of their native country like Jamiaca in case of poet.
As the poem is a depiction of a sense of nostalgia so the people living in New York are longing for true nature which they can only gain in their immagination rather than of physical one. The poem is a depiction of technology. One can relate the work in the poem with the pictures of a still camera because the words are beautifully showing the sense of longing and the words are actually drawing a picutre of the past through which the writer has gone. Why the poem is being related with the still art because there is no movement of the scenarios which are prevailing in the heart and mind of the writer.
In the poem one can easily observe the ambitions of all those who are not inhabitant of the area which is being depicted and they are longing for their homelands the blue skies and fruit trees of their natural home place. In the poem there is a sense of exile and it looks as perhaps the poet and many other pople are being exiled from their native countries against some legal case. All this is due to the invention of innovative technology and the blacks are feeling a great disappointment as the technology oriented society is pushing them back. Their love with nature or with their country is creating severe problems in the way of their success and they remain lost in the dreams of their homeland. So poem is actually a picture representation of reacial discrimination or racial issues.
Claude has shown very strong affiliations in the poem with his homeland and sky of his homeland during his stay at Kansas State College in America and he has shown a well comparison between his homeland and New York. In the poem he is of the opinion that all those blacks who are living in their homeland they are more near to nature and the nature is providing them due respect. He is of the veiw that they are leading their lives as kings and with some purpose because they have no tension as in 1920s the blacks were treated as a wretched creature on land. The people of Jamaica are free to enjoy the fruit trees and sky but on the other hand the poet is leading a life of exile in a couintry which is based on the concept of industrialism. There is no concept of fruit trees and open sky because American states are too much crowded. The poem shows that the technology or industrialism has ruined the very existence of nature and the more civilized society is destroying the very roots of nature. But the character of Claude McKay is also contradictory as he is the supporter of nature or his homeland while he did not went back to his homeland Jamaica and was feeling more comfortable in a country like America. So for him America was a cushy tropic rather than of tropics of Jamiaca.
The fruits which are being presented in the poem are used as metaphors becaue the fruits in America are telling him about the fruits which he had eaten in his homeland Jamiaca. The tropics are also used as metaphorically and perhaps they are actually the tropical fruits which exist in America. Rills in the poem are also used as metaphorically becaue they are actually the small streams which were flowing in the native country of poet and he is remembering them and weeping. Window is also used as a metaphor which we can directly relate the mental condition at the time when a man is thinking about his homeland or about his family and he will also be leading an exiled life. The thinking of man is also served as a sort of window that would help to show him the memoires of his past.