Saturday, 25 July 2009

Reading Robert Frost(6)

(photo) blue morning glories, in Matsudo, Chiba prefecture, Japan

Desert Places

Snow falling and night falling fast, oh, fast
In a field I looked into going past,
And the ground almost covered smooth in the snow,
But a few weeds and stubble showing last.

The woods around it have it-it is theirs.
All animals are smothered in their lairs.
I am too absent-spirited to count;
The loneliness includes me unawares.

And lonely as it is that loneliness
Will be more lonely ere it will be less-
A blanker whiteness of benighted snow
With no expression, nothing to express.

They cannot scare me with their empty spaces
Between stars-on stars where no human race is.
I have it in me so much nearer home
To scare myself with my own desert places.

I think the key word of this poem is snow. Frost sees it as something negative. The snow makes him feel lonely and think it has no expression and nothing to express. The snow triggers him to imagine the empty spaces between stars and reminds him of his desert places in his mind. This poem is so dark. But I think Frost had a courage to listen to himself truthfully.

Friday, 24 July 2009

Reading Robert Frost(5)

(photo) a working man at the river, in Matsudo, Chiba prefecture, Japan

Neither Out Far Nor In Deep

The people along the sand
All turn and look one way.
They turn their back on the land.
They look at the sea all day.

As long as it takes to pass
A ship keeps raising its hull;
The wetter ground like glass
Reflects a standing gull.

The land may vary more;
But wherever the truth may be―
The water comes ashore,
And the people look at the sea.

They cannot look out far.
They cannot look in deep.
But when was that ever a bar
To any watch they keep?

This is an interesting poem. There is a comparison between the sea and the land. The land symbolizes something that varies and the sea not varies. I think the poem expresses Frost's despair about civilization on the land. And he seems to try to search for hope in the sea without looking out far and looking in deep. The sea is the beginning of life and the end of life. Frost appears to be a pessimist but actually could be an optimist and humorist, reading the last two lines.

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Reading Robert Frost(4)

(photo) an althaes called "sokobeni", that Rikyu(1522-1591), a master of ceremonial tea, loved very much, in Matsudo, Chiba prefecture, japan

Acquainted With The Night

I have been one acquainted with the night.
I have walked out in rain ―and back in rain.
I have outwalked the further city light.

I hve looked down the saddest city lane.
I have passed by the watchman on his beat
And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.

I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet
When far away an interrupted cry
Came over houses from another street,

But not to call me back or say good-by;
And further still at an unearthly height,
One luminary clock against the sky

Proclaimed the time was neither wrong nor right.
I have been one acquainted with the night.

We have been afraid of the night since the ancient age and managed to conquer it by various technologies. But the night and silence is the nature of the universe. The night doesn't have nothing, but the moon, namely time. I think those who are acquainted with the night might appreciate the solemnity of the universe beyond right and wrong.