He is highly regarded for his realistic depictions of rural life and his command of American colloquial speech. His work frequently employed settings from rural life in New England in the early twentieth century, using them to examine complex social and philosophical themes.
One issue in this poem, then, is simply that of selfless giving up as opposed to keeping something for oneself. It is a question relevant to the artist's need to hoard himself as opposed to his human obligation to give himself; it illustrates the kind of conflict in Frost that was generated by his mother's hero tales of self-sacrifice and his opposite need to work for himself in asserting his creative originality EY Like the question in "Love and a Question," this poem too asks how far one is supposed to go in self-sacrifice, how one is to draw the line between personal rights, property, or needs and some other's right to make a claim on his sympathy, to As a modern poem him feel guilty, or to make him give up something that he need not have given up.
In this case the conflict is further complicated because it seems to be between something that is of little consequence to the speaker, yet vital to the tramps. The claims are not of equal weight: The last stanza, which declares the necessity for uniting vocation and avocation, love and need, work and playas the ideal way of doing a deed, does not resolve the dilemma of who should be chopping the wood.
There seems to exist a separation between love and need, work and play. Yet there is need and need: In fact the recognition on the part of the speaker is a generous and an unselfish one: Nothing on either side was said. They knew they had but to stay their stay And all their logic would fill my head: As that I had no right to play With what was another man's work for gain.
My right might be love but theirs was need. And where the two exist in twain Theirs was the better right-agreed. CP The claim on his conscience may not have been valid or fair, but it worked all the same. Their "logic" did fill his head as they had counted on its doing, and whether he gives up the task or not is irrelevant, for once their logic had fined his head, the pleasure in the task would be gone.
If the conflict is resolved on his terms, we must assume he will give up the task should these claims remain separate; that he will continue to do it should they be united. Pay then was what defined it as work rather than play, that made it vital and "right.
The crucial question is what will be the gain.
Of what importance is it to the chopper? Loosing his soul in spending these blows on the wood is an important activity whether the wood is important or not.
In the inability of the tramps to understand his needs, Frost proves them inferior to the speaker who sees theirs. It is, once more, a matter of how one is reading the scene and what one brings to the reading. Frost reads them better than they read him.
Another need that the task answers is for a physical connection, muscular exertion, pitting oneself against an earth, a tree, a nature that shows crystal teeth, that moves capriciously between March and May and back in a moment: You'd think I never had felt before The weight of an ax-head poised aloft, The grip on earth of outspread feet.
The life of muscles rocking soft And smooth and moist in vernal heat. CP A deed done "for. It must require poise and balance as surely as does that boy mastering birches.How to Write a Poem.
In this Article: Article Summary Sample Poems Starting the Poem Writing the Poem Polishing the Poem Community Q&A Writing a poem is all about observing the world within or around you. A poem can be about anything, from love to loss to the rusty gate at the old farm.
"The Stolen Child" is a poem by William Butler Yeats, published in in The Wanderings of Oisin and Other Poems.
I THINK that I shall never see: A poem lovely as a tree. A tree whose hungry mouth is prest: Against the sweet earth's flowing breast; A tree that looks at God all day, 5.
The Favorite Poem Project A partnership between Boston University, the Library of Congress, and other organizations, with original funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.
16 Modern Poets You Need to Know About. She plays on this translator role in the poem below, taking inspiration from Beyoncé. (Photo via EJ Koh) Read This.
Today’s Poem Snow Diary by Cynthia Cruz • from Dregs • Four Way Books Featured Poet Cynthia Cruz Cynthia Cruz is the author of five collections of poetry, including four with Four Way Books: The Glimmering Room (), Wunderkammer (), and How the End Begins ().