Wednesday, 24 May 2017

First of all, I marvel at how Robert Frost turned a mere complex sentence to a deep thought poem; seriously, Frost was a poetry genius.

If I'm to put this poem in a sentence, I will write: "A crow showered me with snow while sadly sitting under a hemlock tree and relieved me of my sorrow."

Dust of Snow by Robert Frost is a short two stanza rhyme poem of 4 lines per stanza. The first stanza has an end rhyme of ABAB while the second stanza has an end rhyme pattern of CDCD. The first stanza revealed an incidence (a crow pouring snow on the poet) while the second stanza showed the impact of the incidence on the poet (the sad poet who wanted to ruminate his sorrow under the hemlock tree then came to realize that frustration is a natural thing in life; anything can bring vexation including nature's bird, tree, and snow).

The message of the poem is straight as arrow; "Sorrow is part of life". Frost, whose poetry always beautiful nature, also used some elements of nature such snow, crow, hemlock to weave his message to the poem readers by signifying that nature and natural things don't always assure happiness and peace. The poet probably went under the peaceful hemlock tree to calm himself of his sorrowful mind but the crow on the tree bartered him with snow. The poem, whose setting seemed winter has a very short and simple diction.

In terms of the poetic devices, "my heart" can be considered a synecdeche, "saved some part" is an alliteration, "dust of snow" is an imagery which is of sight. Some critics saw irony in the poem saying that crow and hemlock are symbols of evil but such evil symbols brought happiness to the poet; as far as I'm concerned, I can't refute their opinion based on the fact that poetry can be viewed with diverse eyes. Though I'm of the believe that Robert Frost used "crow" in the poem in order to fulfill his love for end rhyme scheme where "crow" in line 1 rhymes with "snow" in line 3. The line six which reads "A change of mood" truly showed the poet's switch of mood.

Considering the poem's title "Dust of Snow", the use of dust can also be viewed from a literary angle. Besides the view that "dust" in the context seemed metonymy referring to drizzle, "dust" also has a figurative meaning which is trouble or disturbance. The snow truly disturbed the poet sitting under the hemlock tree.

Samuel C. Enunwa aka samueldpoetry
(the Leo with wings flying)


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