Friday, April 18, 2008

Springtime Musing

I didn't post up my poem for last Sunday, so I'm doing it today. (Yes, that's really how far behind I am.)

Anyway, this is one of my old-time favorite poems. I really love Robert Frost. I think it's because he doesn't try to do anything complicated. He was one of the first poets I read, and even at nine/ten years old, I could understand.

Nothing Gold Can Stay
By Robert Frost

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

The classical interpretation of this poem is that it is an eloquent metaphor for the rise and fall of mankind. I think it could be seen that way, but mean so many other things too.

It always comes to mind the first time I feel my surrounding emerging from the winter - the first time it 'feels' like spring. It captures that first zing of excitement that races through your blood when you realize the season has changed.

To me, it's also a metaphor for life. Natures first green equates to youth. Youth is golden, new, shining with possibilities. And of course, the inevitable disillusionment that accompanies age and experience, sometimes even giving way to a pessimistic, or 'grieving' attitude towards life. And the poem almost laments how sad it is that we cannot hold on to that 'golden' outlook.

Frost also has a wonderful grasp and conveyance of the 'circle of life' in this poem. He paints a picture of one revolution of the cycle - the first green, then the leafing, then flowering; the dawn giving way to day.

What other meanings do you take away from it?

2 comments:

~Liz~ said...

I love this poem. I think it represents every part of life.

There is always excitement involved with something new, but even though that newness must fade, it replaced by something fuller and more complete. And while we greive for the loss of that newness, it is only because it disappears for the winter, that we are able to appreciate the wonder of spring.

Gwen said...

I'm not surprised, Liz! We have very similar tastes! =)

And I completely agree - thanks!