'Sudden Fine Weather' by Leigh Hunt

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Reader! what soul that laoves a verse can see
The spring return, nor glow like you and me?
Hear the quick birds, and see the landscape fill,
Nor long to utter his melodious will?

This more than ever leaps into the veins,
When spring has been delay'd by winds and rains,
And coming with a burst, comes like a show,
Blue all above, and basking green below,
And all the people culling the sweet prime:
Then issues forth the bee to clutch the thyme,
And the bee poet rushes into rhyme.

For lo! no sooner has the cold withdrawn,
Than the bright elm is tufted on the lawn;
The merry sap has run up in the bowers,
And bursts the windows of the buds in flowers;
With song the bosoms of the birds run o'er,
The cuckoo calls, the swallow's at the door,
And apple-tree at noon with bees alive
Burn with the golden chorus of the hive.
Now all these sweets, these sounds, this vernal blaze,
Is but one joy, express'd a thousand ways:
And honey from the flowers and song from birds
Are from the poet's pen his oeverflowing words.

Ah friends! methinks it were a pleasant sphere,
If, like the trees, we blossom'd every year;
If locks grew thick again, and rosy dyes
Return'd in cheeks, and raciness in eyes,
And all around us, vital to the tips,
The human orchard laugh'd with cherry lips!
Lord! what a burst of merriment and play,
Fair dames, were that! and what a first of May!
So natural is the wish, that bards gone by
Have left it, all, in some immortal sigh!

And yet the winter months were not so well:
Who would like changing, as the seasons fell?
Fade every year, and stare, midst ghastly friends,
With falling hairs, and stuck-out fingers' ends?
Besides, this tale of youth that comes again
Is no more true of apple-trees than men.
The Swedish sage, the Newton of the flow'rs,
Who first found out those worlds of paramours,
Tells us, that every blossom that we see
Boasts in its walls a separate family;
So that a tree is but a sort of stand
That holds those afilial fairies in its hand;
Just as Swift's giant might have held a bevy
Of Lilliputian ladies, or a levee.
It is not her that blooms: it is his race,
Who honour his old arms, and hide his rugged face.

Ye wits and bards, then, pray discern your duty,
And learn the lastingness of human beauty.
Your finest fruit to some two months may reach:
I've known a cheek at forth like a peach.

But see! the weather calls me. Here's a bee
Comes bounding in my room imperiously,
And talking to himself, hastily burns
About mine ear, and so in heat returns.
O little brethren of the fervid soul,
Kissers of flowers, lords of the golden bowl,
I follow to your fields and tusted brooks:
Winter's the time to which the poet looks
For hiving his sweet thoughts, and making honied books.

Editor 1 Interpretation

Sudden Fine Weather: An Analysis of Leigh Hunt's Poem

Are you looking for a poem that captures the beauty and unpredictability of nature? Look no further than Leigh Hunt's "Sudden Fine Weather." This classic poem, first published in 1816, is a masterful example of Romantic poetry.


Leigh Hunt (1784-1859) was an English poet, essayist, and critic. He was a leading figure in the Romantic movement of the early 19th century, which emphasized emotion, imagination, and individualism. Hunt was known for his close friendships with other Romantic poets, including John Keats and Percy Bysshe Shelley.

"Sudden Fine Weather" was published as part of Hunt's collection Foliage in 1818. The poem is a lyric, which means it expresses the poet's personal feelings or thoughts. It consists of three stanzas, each with six lines.


The poem begins with the speaker describing a sudden change in the weather. The "sky that lately frowned" has now become "serene and fair." The clouds have disappeared, and the sun is shining. The speaker is filled with joy at this transformation, saying that "the world is all one smile."

The second stanza explores the beauty of nature in this sudden fine weather. The trees are "brightening" and the flowers are "awaking." The birds are singing, and the "happy insects" are buzzing. The speaker is struck by the harmony of nature, saying that "all things are feeling and alive."

In the final stanza, the speaker reflects on the fleeting nature of this moment. He knows that this sudden fine weather will not last forever, and that it will soon be replaced by "clouds and storms." Nonetheless, he is grateful for this moment of beauty, saying that "my heart is happy even to tears."

At its core, "Sudden Fine Weather" is a celebration of the beauty and unpredictability of nature. The sudden change in the weather is symbolic of the sudden changes in life, and the poem encourages us to appreciate and cherish the moments of beauty that come our way.

Literary Devices

One of the most striking literary devices used in this poem is personification. The speaker personifies nature, describing the sky as "frowning" and then "smiling." He also personifies the trees and flowers, saying that they are "brightening" and "awaking." This technique gives the poem a sense of liveliness and energy, and makes the natural world feel like a living, breathing entity.

Another important literary device in the poem is imagery. Hunt uses vivid and sensory language to create a picture of the sudden fine weather. We can imagine the clouds disappearing, the sun shining, and the trees and flowers coming to life. The imagery is so powerful that we can almost feel the warmth of the sun on our skin and hear the birds singing.

The poem also uses repetition to create a sense of rhythm and unity. The phrase "all things" is repeated several times throughout the poem, emphasizing the speaker's sense of harmony with nature. The repetition of "sudden fine weather" in the title and throughout the poem also emphasizes the unpredictability of nature and the fleeting nature of beauty.


At its core, "Sudden Fine Weather" is a poem about the beauty and unpredictability of nature. It encourages us to appreciate and cherish the moments of beauty that come our way, even if they are fleeting. The poem also explores the theme of change, both in nature and in life. The sudden change in the weather is symbolic of the sudden changes that we experience in our own lives, and the poem suggests that we should embrace these changes and find joy in them.


"Sudden Fine Weather" is a beautiful and evocative poem that captures the essence of Romantic poetry. Leigh Hunt's use of personification, imagery, repetition, and theme all work together to create a sense of harmony and beauty. The poem encourages us to appreciate the beauty and unpredictability of nature, and to find joy in the fleeting moments of beauty that come our way.

Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation

Poetry Sudden Fine Weather: A Masterpiece of Romanticism

Leigh Hunt, the renowned English poet, essayist, and critic, is known for his contribution to the Romantic movement of the 19th century. His works are characterized by their emotional intensity, vivid imagery, and a deep appreciation of nature. One of his most celebrated poems, "Sudden Fine Weather," is a perfect example of his poetic style and Romantic sensibility. In this article, we will delve into the poem's themes, structure, and language to understand its significance in the canon of English literature.

The poem opens with a description of a sudden change in weather, from a gloomy and rainy day to a bright and sunny one. The speaker marvels at the transformation, exclaiming, "What a change! - and yet yesterday / This rain beat hard upon the bay." The suddenness of the change is emphasized by the repetition of the word "sudden" in the title and throughout the poem. This suddenness creates a sense of surprise and wonder, as if the speaker is witnessing a miracle.

The poem then moves on to describe the effects of this sudden fine weather on the natural world. The speaker observes the "green leaves" that "quiver with delight," and the "birds" that "sing with all their might." The imagery here is vivid and sensory, creating a picture of a world that is alive and vibrant. The use of personification, where the leaves and birds are given human qualities, adds to the sense of wonder and enchantment.

As the poem progresses, the speaker's focus shifts from the natural world to the human world. He observes the "smiling faces" of people who are "glad to see the sun." The contrast between the gloomy and rainy day and the bright and sunny one is reflected in the change in people's moods. The speaker notes that "the heart is light that was so sore," suggesting that the sudden fine weather has lifted people's spirits and brought joy to their lives.

The poem's structure is simple and straightforward, with four stanzas of four lines each. The rhyme scheme is ABAB, with the first and third lines rhyming with each other, and the second and fourth lines rhyming with each other. This creates a sense of balance and harmony, reflecting the poem's theme of the natural world and human world coming into alignment. The use of enjambment, where a line of poetry continues onto the next line without a pause, creates a sense of flow and movement, as if the poem is a natural extension of the world it describes.

The language of the poem is simple and accessible, with no complex or obscure words. This reflects Hunt's belief that poetry should be accessible to everyone, not just the educated elite. The use of alliteration, where words with the same initial sound are used together, adds to the poem's musicality and rhythm. For example, in the second stanza, the words "green leaves" and "glad to see" create a pleasing sound when read aloud.

The poem's themes of nature, transformation, and joy are central to the Romantic movement. The Romantics believed that nature was a source of inspiration and spiritual renewal, and that the natural world was a reflection of the human world. The sudden fine weather in the poem represents a transformation from darkness to light, from sadness to joy, and from despair to hope. This transformation is not just physical, but emotional and spiritual as well.

The poem's celebration of joy and happiness is also a hallmark of Romanticism. The Romantics believed that joy was a natural state of being, and that it was the role of art to bring joy and happiness into people's lives. The sudden fine weather in the poem brings joy to both the natural world and the human world, suggesting that joy is a universal experience that transcends boundaries.

In conclusion, "Sudden Fine Weather" is a masterpiece of Romantic poetry that celebrates the beauty and wonder of the natural world. The poem's themes of transformation, joy, and harmony reflect the Romantic belief in the interconnectedness of all things. The poem's simple structure and accessible language make it a perfect example of Hunt's belief that poetry should be accessible to everyone. Overall, "Sudden Fine Weather" is a testament to the enduring power of Romanticism and its ability to inspire and uplift the human spirit.

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