Compare Five A. M. And Five Flights Up

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For many people, the early hours of the morning can hold numerous possibilities from time for quiet reflections to beginning of the day observations to waking up and taking in the fresh air. In the instance of the poems “Five A.M.” and “Five Flights Up,” respective poets William Stafford and Elizabeth Bishop write of experiences similar to these. However, what lies different in their styles is the state of mind of the speakers. While Stafford’s speaker silently reflects on his walk at dawn from a philosophical view of facing the troubles that lie ahead in his day, Bishop’s speaker observes nature’s creations and their blissful well-being after the bad day had before and the impact these negative thoughts have on her psychological state in terms…show more content…
In the stanzas of Elizabeth Bishop’s poem, the speaker very honestly observes the scenes from outside her apartment. From her point of view, she sees a both a bird and a dog in the process of sleeping. The speaker views these animals as having simple lives unbothered by endless questions or worries. Instead, the two live peaceful, uninterrupted existences, rising every morning knowing that “everything is answered” (ln. 22). However, the speaker lives in contrast to this statement instead anxiously awaiting the next day where uncertainty is a likely possibility. Unlike the dog and the bird, the speaker cannot sit passively by as the world continues in its cycle and she carries a variety of emotions, such as a sense of shame. It is evident here that the speaker has gone through or is currently undergoing some sort of struggle. When she states that “Yesterday brought to today so lightly!” she does so in longing for the world to recognize her for her issues by viewing the earth’s graces as so light of actions, and in doing so, she fails to recognize that she can no longer comprehend the beauty of nature that it offers her. In viewing the light hitting the trees as “gray light streaking each bare branch” (ln. 11), she only sees the monotony of the morning and condescends it to merely “another tree” (ln. 13.) To her, the morning is something…show more content…
The speaker in “Five A.M.” looks to nature as a source of beauty during his early morning walk, and after clearing his mind and processing his thoughts along the journey, he begins his return home feeling as though he is ready to begin the “uphill curve” (ln. 14) in order to process his daily struggles. However, while the speaker in “Five Flights Up,” shares the same struggles as her fellow speaker, she does little to involve herself in nature other than to observe it from the safety of her place of residence. Although suffering as a result of her struggles, the speaker does little to want to help herself out of her situation, instead choosing to believe that she cannot hardly bare recovery or to lift the shroud of night that has fallen over her. Both speakers face a journey ahead of them whether it be “the uphill curve where a thicket spills with birds every spring” (ln. 14-15) or the five flights of stares ahead of them, yet it is in their attitude where these two individuals differ. Through the appreciation of his early morning surroundings, the speaker in “Five A.M.” finds solitude and self-fulfillment, whereas the speaker in “Five Flights Up” has still failed to realize her own role in that of her recovery from this dark time in her life and how nature can serve a beneficial role in relieving her of her

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