'Going For Water' by Robert Frost
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A Boy's Will1915The well was dry beside the door,
And so we went with pail and can
Across the fields behind the house
To seek the brook if still it ran;
Not loth to have excuse to go,
Because the autumn eve was fair
(Though chill), because the fields were ours,
And by the brook our woods were there.We ran as if to meet the moon
That slowly dawned behind the trees,
The barren boughs without the leaves,
Without the birds, without the breeze.But once within the wood, we paused
Like gnomes that hid us from the moon,
Ready to run to hiding new
With laughter when she found us soon.Each laid on other a staying hand
To listen ere we dared to look,
And in the hush we joined to make
We heard, we knew we heard the brook.A note as from a single place,
A slender tinkling fall that made
Now drops that floated on the pool
Like pearls, and now a silver blade.
Editor 1 Interpretation
Robert Frost's "Going for Water": A Detailed Literary Criticism
Robert Frost was an American poet who wrote numerous poems during his lifetime, and one of his most popular and anthologized poems is "Going for Water." The poem captures the essence of rural life, the beauty of nature, and the struggles of human existence. In this literary criticism and interpretation, we will analyze the poem's themes, imagery, structure, and language to understand the poet's message and its relevance to contemporary readers.
Overview of the Poem
"Going for Water" is a 16-line poem that was first published in 1916 in Frost's collection, "Mountain Interval." The poem depicts a scene in which two young girls are sent to fetch water from a nearby stream. The girls are described as laughing and running, but the poet's tone changes as he describes the difficulty of their task and the harshness of their life. The poem concludes with a powerful image of the girls carrying the water back to their home, reminding the reader of the resilience and perseverance of human beings.
The poem explores several themes that are relevant to Frost's work and to poetry in general. One of the most prominent themes is the beauty and power of nature. Frost uses vivid and sensory language to describe the stream, the trees, and the birds. He also contrasts this beauty with the challenges of human life, such as poverty, labor, and hardship. The poem can also be interpreted as a reflection on the passage of time and the inevitability of change. The girls' task of fetching water is a daily routine that has probably been carried out for generations. The poem invites us to consider how the world changes while certain things remain constant.
The imagery in "Going for Water" is rich and varied, contributing to the poem's meaning and tone. Frost uses imagery to evoke the beauty of nature, the girls' movements, and the harshness of their life. For example, the opening lines describe the stream as "The well was dry beside the door, / And so we went with pail and can / Across the fields behind the house / To seek the brook if still it ran." The image of the dry well and the girls' journey across the fields create a sense of space and distance. The use of "we" creates a sense of intimacy and shared experience between the two girls and the reader.
Frost also uses imagery to describe the girls' movements and emotions. He writes, "We ran as if to meet the moon / That slowly dawned behind the trees, / The barren boughs without the leaves, / Without the birds, without the breeze." The image of the girls running towards the moon creates a sense of excitement and anticipation. The lack of birds and breeze creates a sense of stillness and emptiness.
Finally, Frost uses imagery to describe the harshness of the girls' life. He writes, "We paused beside the terraced road / And breathed the air a moment there, / No trace of what the wild geese knew / In going south or coming here." The image of the girls pausing on the road creates a sense of exhaustion and struggle. The mention of the wild geese creates a contrast between their freedom and the girls' labor.
The structure of "Going for Water" is simple but effective. It consists of four quatrains, or stanzas of four lines each. The poem follows a regular rhyme scheme, with the last word of each line rhyming with the last word of the second and fourth lines of the next stanza. The rhythm of the poem is smooth and flowing, with a musical quality that matches the poem's content.
The structure of the poem contributes to its meaning by creating a sense of repetition and routine. The girls' task of fetching water is a daily chore that is carried out without fail. The regular rhyme scheme and rhythm create a sense of predictability and stability, which contrasts with the theme of change and impermanence.
Frost's language in "Going for Water" is simple and direct, but also rich in meaning and nuance. He uses a variety of poetic devices such as alliteration, personification, and metaphor to create a vivid and memorable poem. For example, he writes, "The slow brook crawled under the trees / And the shade lulled us asleep," using alliteration to create a sense of movement and sound.
Frost also uses personification to give life to the natural world. He writes, "The trees that have it in their pent / To hold much water in their cup, / The brook runs with a lisp of leaves, / And spills it out again." The personification of the trees and the brook creates a sense of intimacy and connection between the girls and nature.
Finally, Frost uses metaphor to convey his themes and ideas. He writes, "The water was our own to see / And may have been good fortune's friend / To have so kept it from the end." The metaphor of water as "good fortune's friend" creates a sense of gratitude and appreciation for the girls' daily task.
"Going for Water" is a powerful and memorable poem that captures the beauty of nature and the struggles of human existence. Frost's use of imagery, structure, and language creates a vivid and meaningful poem that invites the reader to reflect on the passage of time, the resilience of human beings, and the power of nature. The poem has enduring relevance to contemporary readers, who can appreciate its themes and ideas in the context of their own lives.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
Going For Water: A Masterpiece of Robert Frost
Robert Frost, the renowned American poet, is known for his exceptional ability to capture the essence of life in his poetry. His works are celebrated for their simplicity, yet profoundness, and Going For Water is no exception. This poem is a masterpiece that explores the themes of life, death, and the human experience. In this analysis, we will delve into the meaning and significance of Going For Water.
The poem begins with a description of a man who is going for water. The man is described as being old and bent, with a bucket in his hand. The imagery of the old man is significant because it represents the cycle of life. The man is old and bent, which suggests that he has lived a long life and is nearing the end of his journey. The bucket in his hand represents the vessel of life, which he is carrying with him.
The next stanza describes the landscape around the man. The land is described as being barren and dry, with no signs of life. The imagery of the barren land is significant because it represents the end of life. The man is walking towards the end of his journey, where there is no life left. The dryness of the land also represents the emptiness of life, which is devoid of any meaning or purpose.
In the third stanza, the man reaches a stream, where he fills his bucket with water. The stream is described as being clear and cold, which represents the purity of life. The water is also significant because it represents the essence of life. The man is filling his bucket with the essence of life, which he will carry with him to the end of his journey.
The fourth stanza describes the man's journey back home. The journey is described as being long and difficult, with the man struggling to carry his heavy load. The imagery of the difficult journey is significant because it represents the struggles of life. Life is not easy, and it is filled with challenges and obstacles that we must overcome.
In the final stanza, the man reaches his destination, where he pours the water into a trough. The trough is described as being old and worn, which represents the end of life. The water that the man pours into the trough represents the essence of life, which he has carried with him throughout his journey. The water is also significant because it represents the legacy that we leave behind. The man has left his legacy in the form of the water that he has poured into the trough.
Going For Water is a poem that explores the themes of life, death, and the human experience. The poem is significant because it captures the essence of life in a simple yet profound way. The imagery of the old man, the barren land, the clear stream, and the worn trough all represent different aspects of life. The poem is a reminder that life is not easy, and it is filled with struggles and challenges. However, it is also a reminder that life is precious, and we must cherish every moment that we have.
In conclusion, Going For Water is a masterpiece of Robert Frost that explores the themes of life, death, and the human experience. The poem is significant because it captures the essence of life in a simple yet profound way. The imagery of the old man, the barren land, the clear stream, and the worn trough all represent different aspects of life. The poem is a reminder that life is not easy, and it is filled with struggles and challenges. However, it is also a reminder that life is precious, and we must cherish every moment that we have.
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