After Apple Picking
By 00070ea4, Updated
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In the poem he is literally picking apples, and he is literally tired from picking apples each day.
Figuratively the apples are goals in his life
Apples in literature mean knowledge
The metaphor apple picking is his life
The barrels represent his goals or wants in life, and the filled buckets mean that he accomplished that certain goal.
The empty buckets represent his regrets or the stuff he wanted to be when he was young, but didn't become.
The ladder represents his path through life and he is picking knowledge as he climbs the ladder until he has fulfilled his life and goes up to heaven.
The metaphor sleeping and being tired means that he has lived his life through and has gone to heaven.
Literally he is sleeping, because he is tired of picking apples.
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