Aunt Jennifer is shown doing needlework, a traditional activity for women of her times. She is embroidering Tigers on a Panel. The Tigers represent the freedom she expires for, from the confines of conservative norms and tradition imposed by society. Tigers are bold, bright, yellow coloured, inhabitants of the green forests. They are unafraid of the men beneath the tree, something aunt cannot do because of the looming presence of her oppressor that in her husband. She is struggling with the needles and is unable to do her work, which shows her inability to express herself freely in the male dominant society.
The wedding band which sits heavily on her hand is coming in the way of her creativity, which in real life is suppressed and aunt stifled by her callous husband. Even in death, there is no escape or relief for aunt Jennifer from terror and fear, “Jennifer hand still ringed”, speak of the ‘ordeals’. She was mastered during her lifetime. The ringed hand is the testimony to the life she lives. Aunt fades away but the Tigers have been immortalised by her. Her struggle for identity is evident. In death, She faded away, only her mortal self is gone but the tigers she created, continue to live symbolising her suppressed desire and aspirations.
Tags: summary of aunt jennifers tiger poem, theme of aunt jennifer tiger