Unlike any other sonnets of Gerard Manley Hopkins, Spring is not so popular as the others. It is written between 1844- 1889.
But it was not published until the collection of the poem of Hopkins published in 1918.
The sonnet portrays the beauty of spring. In reference to the poem, Gerard Manley Hopkins comments ‘When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush’.
Spring Poem Analysis
This poem describes and celebrates the beauty of Spring and the liveliness it brings along.
Spring has been, written by following the form of an Italian Sonnet. Usually, sonnets have only one single stanza, but as it is an Italian sonnet it has been broken into two parts, the octet and the sestet, and created two separate stanzas.
The poem consists of fourteen lines and has the rhyme scheme ABBA ABBA CDC DCD.
In the very beginning, the narrator of the poem gives a brief and beautiful opinion about the Spring season. The narrator goes on to say that the blossoms of Spring’s very delightful.
He later gives an example of alliteration trough mentioning we and weeds and wheels repeatedly. He has used vivid imagery and adjectives to describe the bird’s movements and trees.
As the poem proceeds Hopkins has incorporated a metaphor in the poem. In the third line, he gives a biblical reference to heaven. Later he establishes a connection between heaven and spring.
The narrator hears voices coming from the woods. He is delighted with such listening as he considers this to be a refreshment and a spiritual experience.
In the poem spring, there an anaphora occurs which is a repetition of the same word. Everything in this poem becomes more spiritual after this.
Since this is a romantic poem the narrator has portrayed the images of blossoms and trees. He contrasts the blossoms and leaves with the lamb.
According to Christianity, the lamb symbolizes rebirth. This combines nature with spirituality.
In the sestet, the form and tone of poem changes. It immediately changes the patterning of the poem. From here the poem becomes entirely religious.
The narrator questions Christ about Spring and it’s significance. There comes another alliteration. Then it also makes use of assonance with the repetition of the sound of the vowel.
The narrator is concerned about the changes that Spring brings in along with it. He can clearly differentiate life during Spring and life during other times of the year.
He draws out some religious imageries here. He gives a reference to the Garden of Eden to describe the sin of winter. He compares the Spring on earth with the Spring in Eden before the fall of man.
The narrator prays to God to protect the innocent child who may commit sin and moved to hell. He wants the lord to protect the world from the flow of sins.
He deeply prays to God to kindly show a way to save the children and make them religious. At the end of the poem, the narrator comments that the kids are “worthy of winning,” or, should be enlightened with the light of God.
Spring Poem Summary
Spring’ by Gerard Manley Hopkins is about the beauty and liveliness that Spring brings out. The poem also has a touch of religious context about the Garden of Eden.
In the very beginning, the poet gives a brief description of the charms of Spring and the freshness it brings. According to the poet the season is refreshing and revitalizing.
This season symbolizes a new beginning of livelihood. It also removes the sins of the winter. According to Christian, the concept of sin brings out the idea of the Garden of Eden. In the second stanza of the poem, this religious imagery receives further developments.
Later The narrator addresses god to plead him to save the children from committing the sin of the Eden garden.
Spring Poem Theme
Awe and Astonishment
The poem “Spring,” is about the season spring. The narrator here praises the season of spring. It celebrates the beauty of Spring and the astonishment it brings along.
Everything seems refreshing and
joyful. It is a romantic poem which is focusing on the natural elements of the world. The narrator’s heart is filled with awe.
The narrator of this poem is a true worshipper of nature.
In this poem, the narrator is worshipping the season Spring and thus it establishes the importance of natural elements. According to the poet, Spring is a sign of rebirth and Spring washes off all the sins of winter.
The idea of sin refers to the idea of the Garden of Eden. It reminds Christ’s resurrection. Those whoever commits a sin, their sin will eventually lead them towards their downfall.
The narrator is glorifying Spring through this poem and also drags some biblical elements to this poem. It is a romantic spiritual poem.
Man and Nature
Since this is a romantic poem, Hopkins has described and praised Spring vividly. The poet thinks that it comes with an idea of spirituality, the relation between man and nature.
He combined the harmony of man and nature all along in his poem and created a significant one. Hopkins has used various earthly adjectives to objectify nature, as well as to praise nature.
Nature helps the poet more to connect with God.
Hopkins has incorporated the imagery of innocence through the idea of the Garden of Eden. In the Garden of Eden, the innocent creature of God commits sin and gets dismissed from heaven.
The loss of innocence, in the removal of man from Eden, and also in children in the contemporary world brings out the fear or tension to the poem.
With the Spring season, the sins are getting moved away and it brings a new beginning.
Spring Questions and Answers
• What is the rhyme scheme of the poem Spring?
“Spring” follows the form of an Italian Sonnet. It has fourteen lines and uses the rhyme scheme ABBA ABBA CDC DCD.
• Who is the author of the poem Spring?
Spring is a lyric poem written and illustrated by William Blake.
• What is the poem Spring by Gerard Manley Hopkins about?
‘Spring’ by Gerard Manley Hopkins describes the joys of spring against a backdrop of religious references to the Garden of Eden and sin.