William Carlos Williams' The Rose - A Symbol of Love

William Carlos Williams' The Rose - A Symbol of Love

Length: 1124 words (3.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
William Carlos Williams' The Rose - A Symbol of Love

William Carlos Williams was a poet and writer who defied norms and constrictions in order to achieve new perspective and enlightenment, especially when it involved the tried and true. He sought to bring new life to old concepts through allowing imagination to shape the form, instead of allowing old ideas to influence our understanding of the subject. This is especially true in the poem "The Rose", which approaches a subject that may induce thoughts of significant others and prom-night disasters, and instead elaborates on the roots of the age-old symbol for love. To be honest, I have absolutely no idea what this poem is about, so hopefully something will make sense by the end of this paper.

The poem starts out as a description of the flower that we all have either received, given, longed for, or been cut by. Instantly, there is the feel of conflict in the language that is being used. Abrasive, heavy words that could be used to describe a murder are mixed with other words that seem to convey a sense of hope and spacial energy. The clusters of thought that somehow constitute a complete sentence make the reading somewhat difficult from the very beginning, but it seems to take on a multi-layered personality as the poem plays itself out. Although there is no mention of the thorny stem, words such as 'sharper', 'cutting', and 'edge', instead describe the flower itself. The constant reference to materials that possess qualities different from any rose such as 'metal', 'copper', 'broken plate", and 'steel', serve to indicate that this flower is being seen through a set of eyes that have perhaps been cast and hardened by the capacity for love.

In contrast to the Nine-Inch Nails words, there are several phrases that become rather ethereal in their incantation. "Grooved columns of air", "But if it ends the start has begun", and "penetrates the Milky Way without contact" all seem to place this flower at the very center of nothingness. This contrast brings to mind high quality photography, which can make an image seem to have sharp edges and contrast greatly with its background.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"William Carlos Williams' The Rose - A Symbol of Love." 123HelpMe.com. 17 Jul 2019

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

William Carlos Williams' This is Just to Say Essay

- William Carlos Williams' This is Just to Say poem (p m) – noun: 1. A verbal composition designed to convey experiences, ideas, or emotions in a vivid and imaginative way, characterized by the use of language chosen for its sound and suggestive power and by the use of literary techniques such as meter, metaphor, and rhyme. 2. A composition in verse rather than in prose. 3. A literary composition written with an intensity or beauty of language more characteristic of poetry than of prose. -- The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition....   [tags: Poem Williams This Just Say Essays]

Research Papers
1571 words (4.5 pages)

Essay on The Use Of Force By William Carlos Williams

- The meaning use of force has been used in so many different ways in the world, but so many people either abuse the use of force or do not even use it at all. In “The Use of Force” William Carlos Williams characterizes how the medical profession uses force on the patient. In “The Use of Force” by William Carlos Williams, he illustrates whether the use of force by a medical professional is ever justified. In the medical field, there are some cases that will require the medical professional to use force on the patient, but will only use the amount of force that is required to help the patent for their own safety....   [tags: Medicine, Physician, William Carlos Williams]

Research Papers
1385 words (4 pages)

The Doctor Stories, by William Carlos Williams Essay

- William Carlos Williams uses the examination and expression of details in The Doctor Stories to show various emotions and the readers’ reactions to those emotions. He uses positive emotions such as enchantment, pleasure, excitement, surprise, and a sense of satisfaction to express the upside of a clinical encounter. He also enables the use of negative emotions for expression - disappointment, frustration, confusion, and perplexity. In order to properly identify the varied emotions and reactions to the complex dimensions of clinical encounters in William Carlos Williams The Doctor Stories, one must first understand the what and the how of clinical encounters....   [tags: William Carlos Williams]

Research Papers
1973 words (5.6 pages)

Essay about William Carlos Williams : An American Poet

- William Carlos Williams was an American poet as well as a skilled physician in the medical field of pediatrics. Williams received his degree from the University Of Pennsylvania Medical School and operated a medical practice for over forty years in his home in Rutherford, where he delivered over two thousand infants. All this while, he kept the second floor of his home as a writing studio where he composed poetry as well as some of his memoirs as a practicing doctor. The Doctor Stories is a compilation some of the great works written by Williams and was compiled by Robert Coles....   [tags: Medicine, Physician, William Carlos Williams]

Research Papers
858 words (2.5 pages)

William Carlos Williams and the New American Culture Essay

- William Carlos Williams' poetry suggest two philosophies he had during his life. While not these ideas are not contrary, they also are not wholly supportive of one another. The first is his rejection of the American Dream – the belief that hard work will lead to success. It is important, with regard to the American Dream, to note Williams' own success within the framework of American society. The second goal seems to be an attempt to create a new, complete, American Culture. As a member of the modernist movement, Williams stands apart from many of his contemporaries not because he was radically different, but because of his approach to literature....   [tags: william carlos, american dream, american poetry]

Research Papers
1192 words (3.4 pages)

Notes Left on the Refrigerator: "This is just to say” by William Carlos Williams

- “This is just to say” by William Carlos Williams is a short poem about a person telling another person that he/she ate his/her breakfast plums and that he/she is sorry. This poem looks like a note left on the refrigerator for a roommate, a family member or a lover to see. This particular style of the poem is what mostly grabbed my attention. This poem is clear and direct. The simple ness if this poem left me confused at first. In the entire poem only the words “I” and “Forgive” are capitalized. The author maybe chose to capitalize “I” because he was trying to give importance to the fact that he did it, like taking responsibility for his actions....   [tags: This is just to say, William Carlos Williams, poet]

Research Papers
735 words (2.1 pages)

The Use of Force by Carlos Williams Essay

- The Use of Force In Carlos Williams’s short story, “The Use of Force,” the doctor’s use of force is portrayed in a way that is controversial. Controversial in that it could easily be argued either that the doctor has complete reason to use force upon the girl, or that the doctor has no right to use any amount of force upon the girl without her consent. It could also be argued either that the results of the doctor’s use of force is a success or a failure. I feel that the doctor has reason to use force upon the girl in order to check her tonsils for a number of reasons....   [tags: The Use of Force Carlos Williams]

Research Papers
549 words (1.6 pages)

The Use of Form and Rhythm in William Carlos Williams's poem, The Dance

- The Use of Form and Rhythm in William Carlos Williams’s poem,“The Dance”      In William Carlos Williams’s poem, “The Dance”, Williams uses the inspiration of a painting by Peter Breughel to shape his poem. Peter Breughel’s painting called “The Kermess” depicts a peasant dance of the mid fifteenth century. It shows the form and rhythm of the dance. Williams also captures the form and the rhythm of this dance in his poem. In William Carlos Williams poem, “The Dance” the open form, suggested images, and rhythm embodies the dance depicted in the painting “The Kermess” by Peter Breughel....   [tags: William Carlos Williams Poetry]

Research Papers
768 words (2.2 pages)

Poem Analysis : Spring And All By William Carlos Williams Essay

- Poetry is expressed through different styles and formats. Each author wants to inject the reader into the writings through style and tone. The first style discussed is the open form poetry. Open form poetry does not have a specific pattern relating to line length, rhyming of words, and meter. The poem “Spring and All” written by William Carlos Williams is an example of what open form poetry is. This poem is about the death of nature and how new life will emerge once nature awakens. New life emerges cold and uncertain as a new season dawns....   [tags: Poetry, Love, Poetic form]

Research Papers
1321 words (3.8 pages)

Love Song By William Carlos Williams Essay examples

- When reading the title, we often associate a love song as something jaunty, pleasureable, and celebrating, or its other extreme, regretting, nostalgic, and full of pity for the singer’s troubles in love. With Williams the singer, the main idea revolves around the concept of an incomplete union in first person point of view, which makes the reading more personal as the reader is using I instead you or he. From this concept stem the ideas that this poem is about hopelessness or happiness, communal sex or masturbation....   [tags: Poetry]

Free Essays
1587 words (4.5 pages)

Related Searches

This effect can also make it seem like the image is in the absolute middle of nowhere. This analogy is also very similar to how somebody may feel after they have lost their girlfriend or boyfriend. To feel cold and vibrant at the same time, along with feeling that you are truly alone is one of the worst feelings that can be experienced. What is interesting about this feeling is the fact that when you most want to die, you feel like you are the most alive.

It is also intriguing that there is a significant amount of duality in the poem. This is exemplified in the definitions of some of the words used. The word 'obsolete' also has the biological definition of being imperfectly developed or atrophied, in addition to meaning gone out of fashion or relevance. Both definitions, although very different, both seemed to make sense. 'Facet' can mean a different aspect to one's personality or the flat surfaces of a gem, which adds to the consistent use of cutting and harsh words. This double meaning lent to the thought that love was being described from two different angles. One of them is the rose being a concept of love in general, while the other could be a symbol for our own souls.

Williams was tremendously interested in art and drawn to the modern art of his era. Modern paintings were becoming more and more abstract, giving the viewer an opportunity to see ordinary things in a very unordinary context. This could enable people to see a lot of different things in one painting. Williams applied this train of thought to his poems as well, exploring not only different ways of viewing subject matter, but also different and experimental ways of conveying the material. In reading "The Rose", a feeling is created moreso than an image, although the entire poem seems to be describing something visually. On one hand, there is the description of the rose itself as a symbol for love in very unordinary ways. Laced into this dialogue, the unorthodox descriptions lead to the feeling that there is a difficult and dark side to love as well. The images of weight, sharpness, and broken plates, mixed with the vast empty space surrounding them puts the reader in a place that is full of despair and longing. The flogged soul is somehow subjected to the most painful aspects of love, but still reaches out with cold, hardened, and sharp petals to set the process of love into motion again and again. No matter how painfully cut by a flower, it is still a common thing to again seek this most precious possession. Renewal of this process comes through coating perception of love or the love inside oneself in more metallic alloys. Although the flower renews itself by drinking the water in the vase, it also takes on the qualities of the vase, which can be either metal or porcelain. This can lend to the analogy that love can make you strong or weak.

The razor edges of these petals and of the form of the flower itself accentuate the definition of this thing called love. Its clarity is a reminder that it can be one of the most important and powerful forces in life. At the same time, this clarity separates love and even oneself from everything else, so that it becomes the only visible object in view. At the edge of these sharp petals lies love itself. It is as if love is what the rose is most willing to give, to the point that it is almost oozing from the very petals. Towards the end of the poem, the rose is reaching out for love with strong steel lines, which dart out into space without ever coming into contact with anything. This hints at not ever finding love, which will make you fragile but will not bruise you. Choose your poison; it sort of sounds like neither option is very tantalizing, although we are all confined to one of the two options.

Overall, there are so many possibilities in which this poem can be read and understood. That is the beauty of art in the fact that it can mean many different things to many people, and therefore becomes limitless in its interpretation. The words chosen and the way in which they are assembled give this poem many different structures. Hopefully, everybody can come up with a different interpretation of this poem, in the same way that we all have a different interpretation of love.
Return to 123HelpMe.com