Esperanza describes the four skinny trees outside her house – she says they are the only ones who understand her, and she is the only one who understands them. Neither she nor they belong here on Mango Street, but they are stuck here. Yet both the trees and Esperanza have a secret strength and a continual anger, which is their reason to keep going. When Esperanza feels like giving up, seeing the trees comforts her, as they have grown despite the concrete, and they keep reaching upward no matter what.
Esperanza begins to develop her sense of self and find inner strength by noticing the beauty around her. She can find inspiration even in these skinny, ugly trees, and is able to empathize with them (a sign of writerly maturity) just as she earlier empathized with her father. She is getting stronger and is also able recognize her own growing strength.