A Study of Winter Poetry Essay

A Study of Winter Poetry Essay

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I chose to study winter poetry because I often focus on the cold and harsh conditions, rather than the beauty present. These poems are excellent in making one see past the bleakness, and toward the magnificence of the dazzling light.
The beginnings of both “Winter” and “The Winter’s Spring” mention the loneliness and coldness of winter. This helps the audience find common ground with the poet, since it is easier to see winter as ugly rather than beautiful. In “The Winter’s Spring”, “The winter comes; I walk alone” (1), asks the audience to follow as no one, but the author believes the in the beauty of winter. “I want no bird to sing” (2) sounds hostile and reclusive, and is reinforced as the author claims to keep his heart his own. Already, the audience views the author as a cold and unloved being. Instead, the following stanzas contrast with the first, and winter is compared to spring. Nature imagery, like “the foliage of the woods” (25) and a white dove’s caring wing are likened to winter. In the poem, the foliage covering the bare trees is the snow, as is the white dove’s wing gently covering everything. “The Winter’s Spring” also uses words that create a heavenly image, like the “Christmas rose” (also known as the Lenten rose), “white”, “piercing light”, “dazzled”, and “white dove” (7,16, 17,22). This contrasts with the audience’s initials views of a lonely and hostile winter, instead suggesting winter emulates the look of heaven. Likewise, the poem “Winter” starts with a violent mood, filled with negative connotations: “Clouded with snow/ The cold winds blow,/ and shrill on leafless bough/ The robin with its burning breast/ Alone sings now” (1-5). There is sensory and sound imagery of a cold snowstorm, and of a bird singing...


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...ly to “Winter”, except that the negative connotations are confined to the first three lines out of thirty, rather than over a third of the poem. Thus, a far greater amount of the poem is used in praise of winter and the remainder is the author gushing over the beauty of winter, by using it as a metaphor to spring. He never wants spring to come, because the winter’s spring is better. Examples include the “snow-white meadows” and the “White Easter of the year in bud” (18,27), with meadows, Easter and flower buds all commonly associated with spring and rebirth, not winter. The recurring and repetitive comparisons in this poem effectively assert the magnificence of winter.
Both of these poems effectively persuade the audience, by first acknowledging the ugliness of winter, but then using common and varied devices like contrast and imagery to praise winter’s beauty.

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