They must see it for what it is, empty. For Stevens, that is not important. It just is, like the tree just is. The effect of the long winters is evident in all the townspeople. The poem contains contradictory elements throughout. These questions raise the issue of whether any truly perspectivist text--because of its assumptions about the nature of understanding--could ever be understood on its own terms.
Stevens often opposes human language to the language or speech of nature, which, being inhuman, is to us pure sound. The speaker of this poem holds two realities in his hands—the reality of winter cold, bare landscapes that are nothing more than landscapes , and the reality we create when we bring our own perspective miserable wind, bitter cold etc. Shmoopers, we've got a serious question: what is reality? The first thing that is noticeable about the poem is that it is actually just one long, complex sentence. In this case the poem may be related to the descriptive-meditative tradition in English poetry that comes down to us from the eighteenth century and the Romantic period. And because snow is almost nothing like Kepler's starlet , it shares in the ambiguous materiality of language, so that the listener, and also his song, is made of snow or nothing. This is the reality that exists in the world according to Stevens, and the only reality achievable.
For such a short poem, this act of peeling back the human perspective evolves slowly and with great nuance over the course of the poem's fifteen lines. Serious, with a huge dose of fun. It is common knowledge that the absence of one sense contributes to the acuteness of another. Is Wallace Steven concerned with imagination and reality, or perception? One must not be effected by the winter, but become part of it, to understand it. For Stevens, the bare landscape of winter serves as a mental gymnasium in which he can ponder much deeper questions: how do we see the world? And how do we do that? With the observer, we hear the wind rustling a few leaves as it blows over the otherwise barren land. However, this romantic view of nature is out of place in the poem.
The speaker is almost saying he prefers darkness. Eliot meant when he argued that free verse is never entirely free. He then attended New York Law School, graduating in 1903. He describes the snow man, who can strip what he sees of his own emotional baggage and see that the world is, well, not much without that emotional baggage. The students can take notes and spend time preparing for the task.
He graduated from Harvard with the intention of becoming a writer having worked on different editor boards and with various magazines while there. Also, each line has either 3 or 4 feet, and the variation per stanza is not even regular. Stevens attended Harvard as a non-degree special student, after which he moved to New York City and briefly worked as a journalist. In other words, we might summarise: we must be more like the winter cool, objective , rather than seeking to make the winter more like us miserable, sad, filled with a sense of loss. The lesson is clear: leave a snow man alone, and it exists for itself, unchanged; touch the snow, and the artifice goes away, as it goes along. The spare form of the poem evidently invites us to fill in its blank spaces with our own conceptions even as it indirectly warns us in my Nietzschean reading that the only mind that could match up with it perfectly would be a blank mind free of preconceptions, which would then comprehend nothing. Students prepare a short oral or written report to tell the class what happened during their task.
The poem is a recipe for seeing things as they really are. However, this line tempts us to ascribe an additional sadness or emotional trauma to the observer who is so able to give himself to the nothingness. Or maybe our personal beliefs help us define the tree? Sheds light on aspects of reality, our perception of reality, and how we, as individuals, guide our imagination and emotions into forming our own perception of the world. It proceeds by amplification, illustrating the inherent dynamism of the mind, its fertile power to proceed on its own impulse. This self-projection is stripped away in the next six lines, which shift from a visual to an aural mode: and not to think Of any misery in the sound of the wind, In the sound of a few leaves, Which is the sound of the land Full of the same wind That is blowing in the same bare place. Is it even possible to strip away those subjective experiences, if they are so inherent to being human? As a result, Wallace Stevens started to question the importance of religion in the modern era, and felt that you should enjoy your life in the present and not waste time living for an afterlife. This stage includes two steps- language analysis and language practice.
Though we are shown three species, they all look essentially the same, and the poem's specificity only diminishes from this point on. When this job was abolished as a result of mergers in 1916, he joined the home office of Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company and left New York City to live in Hartford, where he would remain for the rest of his life. The lines are unrhymed, creating a free verse form. It is the type of poem that you have to read over and reinterpret several times before any meaning can be extracted. That would then alter the scene and add more then to what it is.
It brings, I think, a certain elegance to the presentation. The Snow Man was first published in Poetry magazine in 1921. He would exert none of this spontaneous and almost inevitable creativity. The American poet passed away 50 years ago this year. The speaker of the poem sees through these two realities that he is debating over. As a poet, Stevens struggles to create original perspectives of reality.
Through poetry, Stevens achieves a sort of peace with this paradox. This is one of my favorites as well. And so nothing lives long afterwards no matter what. There is lightning and the thickest thunder. We might then ask: how are e to understand a vision of the uninterpreted nothing the poem seems intent on giving us if we must read it always as an interpreted something? Other parts in which the poem is given this mood and tone include the fourth line of the poem.