He was a keen observer of all things natural. In this short poem, Hopkins appreciates the strength of the god in the universe. He creates a reverent and worshipful tone that epitomizes his feelings of awe and wonder when confronted With the natural world. And, moreover, as you point out, even the this and that of dapple is in flux! The variegated texture and colour of finches' wings is well known, the goldfinch being especially beautiful. What we see in this poem is a dismantling of the usual norms of poetic writing in favor of a style, rhythm and diction that is at once modern and innovative.
A foot may have one strong syllable which could be accompanied by many light ones. All things counter, original, spare, strange; Whatever is fickle, freckled who knows how? The sky like a piebald cow brings together black and white in glorious contrast. All good attributes of creatures, however, diverse among themselves, are somehow — as Hopkins learnt from Duns Scotus — fully present and united in the rich simplicity of the divine being. In line three another combination appears: rose-moles, which are reddish spots on the sides of trout. Lines five and six then serve to connect these musings to human life and activity. In elementary school, he won a poetry contest, and it was evident early on in his life that he was a gifted writer.
It is interesting that Hopkins takes the time to notice these tiny spots and appreciate them. Gerard Manley Hopkins was born in 1844 and was the eldest of nine children. The speaker goes on to give examples. Pied Beauty is a special sonnet consisting of a sestet + quintain, the last line of which is shortened. From the celestial to the terrestrial to the liquid, air, earth and water, the three elements, needing only fire to complete the set. In these colors and patterns, Hopkins seems to liken the earth to a quilt, with a adaptor: Landscape plotted and pieced… The poem concentrates a great deal on nature, but also draws attention to the appearance of men in various trades, and how they look in am array of clothes and tools: … Gear and tackle and trim. He also describes how falling resemble coals bursting in a fire, because of the way in which the chestnuts' reddish-brown meat is exposed when the shells break against the ground.
All things counter, original, spare, strange; Whatever is fickle, freckled who knows how? The delay of the verb in this extended sentence makes this return all the more satisfying when it comes; the long and list-like predicate, which captures the multiplicity of the created world, at last yields in the penultimate line to a striking verb of creation fathers-forth and then leads us to acknowledge an absolute subject, God the Creator. The land no longer looks natural and unspoiled, but worked. Then there are different kinds of industry, with their neat and well-maintained equipment and apparatus. However, the paradox offered by Hopkins is that each positive is only made so because the negative exists. The image transcends the physical, implying how the physical links to the spiritual and meditating on the relationship between body and soul. Though the description is still physical, the idea of a nugget of goodness imprisoned within a hard exterior invites a consideration of essential value in a way that the speckles on a cow, for example, do not. The design of the poem corresponds to the design of the universe.
Earthly beauty may be dappled; but in its dappleness there is something that reminds us of Him who is perfectly simple and without differentiation. His sensual reveling in the myriad pleasures of nature and the world has deeply theological roots. He glorifies the infinite power of God to create the vicissitudes of things and also for the power to bring uniformity despite the diversity. Hopkins is stopping to appreciate the small, useful things we tend to take for granted each day. N the second stanza, Hopkins becomes more general, listing the ways things are different:… Counter, original, spare, strange;Whatever Is fickle, freckled… Walt swift, slow; sweet, sour; dazzle, dim… Then, the last two lines turn our attention back to God, where Hopkins began.
Gerard Manley Hopkins converted to Catholicism in 1866 and went on to become a Jesuit priest and teacher. The aesthetic and ascetic mingle beautifully within the single matrix of the poem. When, when, Peace, will you, Peace? With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim; He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change: Praise Him. In the context of a Victorian age that valued uniformity, efficiency, and standardization, this theological notion takes on a tone of protest. Hopkins was living in North Wales when he wrote this poem and loved to walk from his house to a nearby church through meadows and fields. There is only good in the world because it is not evil, and evil is necessary in order to define good.
All the things in the universe contain the pied beauty. Though most of the Victorian poets deal with the theme of frustration, anxiety, decay, loss of human values and faith, Gerard Manley Hopkins is the only one poet who finds hope in God. Instead of being an ornament of the poem or an illustration, the images become the poem and carry with them the force of ideas that Hopkins has tried to convey in this piece, making the imagery yet another modern element of this piece. Look up at the colours then check out the cattle in the field. The poem focuses on things in nature that have distinct patterning and unusual design and compares and contrasts differences or similarities.
In eleven lines the poet distills the essence of these whilst noting that their beauty comes from a single source - God. Pied Beauty is one of the most anthologized poems of G. With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim; He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change: Praise him. In the next line, Hopkins gives us the image of a farmer who plots out his land as a patchwork quilt so that it yields the crops of his choice. His beauty is changeless and eternal. Pleasant little echoes ripple and lap through the poem —dappled couple, stipple, tackle, fickle, freckled, adazzle.
The message is therefore that one should welcome, and not fear, the opposites that life presents. The poem can be taken as a form of hymn of creation. He talks about colours and patterns observed in everything around him, natural or synthetic, and available in abundance and scarcity. Multiplicity is there in the pattern, somewhere there is alliteration. Take the sky, which can be full of loose, textured cloud, or blotchy cloud, or a variation on a theme of brindle, just like the hides of cows. He strove to keep a positive attitude in life, and even as he was dying of typhoid fever in 1889, his final words were, 'I am happy, so happy! It is immediately apparent that this is both a religious and a nature poem. He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change: Praise him.