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Published: 30-11-2019

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A Literary Review of Those Winter Sundays, a Poem by Robert Hayden

Those Winter Sundays is a poem written by Robert Hayden. The poem includes a speaker who can be deduced to be regretting of not being grateful to a figure he refers as ‘father’ ( This ‘father’ forms the basis of the poem such that all the themes presented in the poem revolve about him. The speaker is clearly describing how his childhood view of his father has changed with his increasing up. The present paper will analyze 3 key points that the poem ‘Those Winter Sundays’ explicitly communicates to its audience. Contextual evidence from the poem will be relied upon in order to ascertain the presence of the talked about points in the poem.

The very first point is a hardworking father complete of fatherly love. All by way of the poem, the speaker paints his father as a loving loved ones man who worked challenging for his whole family members. In the initial line of the first stanza, the speaker states that, “Sundays too my father woke up early”, and in the fourth line nonetheless of the very first stanza the speaker states that, “From the labour in the weekday regardless of whether made,” This indicates that, even when on Sundays hi father was not expected to wake up early, he could just wake up and carry out some chores that he could otherwise keep away from had he not been challenging operating. To demonstrate how loving he was as a father, the speaker argues that his father could “Polish my very good shoes as well” in the third line of the third stanza.

The second point regards to loved ones violence. There is a notion of household violence throughout the poem. The speaker in the second line of the very first stanza talks about ‘blueblack cold’ a phrase that directly links to a violent setting and environment most most likely of the household. The speaker states that “Fearing the chronic angers of that house” in the fourth line of the second stanza, which straight refers to how violent the residence of the speaker was. It can be argued that it is this ‘father’ who propagates the violence that is skilled in the homestead of the speaker. The 1st line of the third stanza makes this argument evident as the speaker narrates that “Speaking indifferently to him” which means that the speaker fears his father most most likely because of his violent nature.

The third point as regards to the poem pertains to the realization that the speaker’s father deserved greater therapy from all the members of his family members. The second line of the third stanza, “Who had driven out the cold” indicates the speaker’s realization of the part his father played in the household. The context of the term cold in this line can not be utilized in reference to the family’s internal violence but rather the external challenges which his father worked difficult to remove and which he deserved credit for. To additional prove that the speaker certainly has realized that his father essential far more gratitude, in the fourth line of the third stanza, the speaker states that, “What did I know, what did I know” a statement which clearly explains that the speaker has ultimately realized what his father deserved.

These Winter Sundays is clearly a poem that employs all the tools and elements of poetry to anxiety on some family themes that existed during the years of its author. Each word, line and stanza performs to successfully bring out the meaning of family life in the years of the author who is regarded to be 1 of the pioneer poets of African-American descent. As such, in the reading and explanation of the poem, it is essential every single word and line in the poem is extensively analyzed.
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