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Poetry - Essay Example

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Summary
The poem describes the historical relationship between father and child as the speaker remembers a particular sacrifice that his father used to make on those winter Sundays…
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Poetry
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You Your Reflections: Those Winter Sundays Robert Haydens poem, Those Winter Sundays, is told by an adult who is reflecting on his childhood. The poem describes the historical relationship between father and child as the speaker remembers a particular sacrifice that his father used to make on those winter Sundays. Throughout the work, the speaker describes his father waking early in the morning to split wood for the fire and suggests that the child took for granted these sacrifices. The poem suggests that only as an adult can the speaker truly understand the fathers love and devotion.
Haydens theme lies in a sort of moral message in that nobody ever bothered to thank the father for his sacrifices. It implies the speakers casual attitude towards his father, who had warmed the house and polished his shoes, the child not realizing the extent of the fathers assistance. To best categorize Those Winter Sundays theme, it might be intended for the reader to take notice of the people who care for you and to offer them love and gratefulness for their sacrifices, no matter how small they may be.
Robert Hayden uses several literary techniques in this poem; one in particular that is most apparent is imagery. Haydens descriptions of the fathers "cracked hands that ached from labor…" and "Id wake and hear the cold splintering, breaking" give the reader a very clear mental view of both the father and the environment. The reader can almost hear the sound of logs being split by an axe (which is hard labor) and a picture
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of a mans weathered, probably calloused hands that were the result of heavy work. The imagery used in Those Winter Sundays leaves little doubt, for the reader, that the father is of the working class and used to performing difficult labor. It serves to feed the theme of the story, allowing the reader to feel pity for the father because he continues to perform his thankless work.
The author also uses personification to make the story more powerful. When the speaker says, "I would rise and dress, fearing the chronic angers of that house", Hayden is essentially granting the house human qualities, suggesting a harsh, angry environment stressed from the winter cold. Possibly, personifying the house as being chronically angry suggests it is an old house that has withstood countless winters and that the early morning environment leaves the house feeling ominous. It is also possible, through personifying the house, that Hayden is attempting to enhance the love that his father brings by comparing love against a gloomy, angry environment.
Those Winter Sundays manages to clearly define the love of a father in relation to his child. In a very small amount of text, the speaker offers a bit of remorse (probably because by then his father had passed away) for not appreciating his fathers sacrifices. Using personification and imagery clearly illustrate the environment, the hard-working father, and the indifference of a child when it comes to appreciating a parents love. The speaker adds, "what did I know of loves austere and lonely offices?" and in doing so shows his fathers dedication to his son, despite the harsh reality of performing loves sacrifices without a single reward. The poem definitely provided a message. Read More
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