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Those Winter Sundays (Reaction Paper Sample)


This essay was on Poetry, the writer was to Write a 900-1000 word essay on the following: In the last stanza of "Those Winter Sundays", the narrator poses a question: "What did I know, what did I know / of love's austere and lonely offices?" In this poem, for whom is love "Austere and lonely," and why? this paper responds with respect to Poet Robert Hayden 1913–1980 1 Robert Hayden, “Those Winter Sundays” from Collected Poems of Robert Hayden, edited by Frederick Glaysher. Copyright ©1966 by Robert Hayden. Reprinted with the permission of Liveright Publishing Corporation. Source: Collected Poems of Robert Hayden (Liveright Publishing Corporation, 1985)

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Those Winter Sundays: real-life application
What do we currently grasp as adults regarding our parents (their sacrifices and responsibilities) that we never comprehended as children? Does such comprehension alter how we currently perceive our parents and relatives? This essay intends to bring out the reality behind child-parent relationship from childhood perspective as well as adulthood, in the modern life application, and quoting or with reference to –"Those Winter Sundays”- by Robert Hayden, more so concentrating on the last stanza, to determine for whom is love "Austere and Lonely," and why, as provided within the poem.
To begin with, the modern families typically are nuclear families, with both parents subjective to family responsibly for the success of the whole family and betterment of their children. In the current world, taking the United States as a perfect example, most of the children regard their parents as heroes and always seek protection and guidance from them. However, there are those incidents that children become over demanding, and the parents tend to holdback some obligations to children, hence making them feel bad, only to realize later it was meant for their best interest. This is similar to the "those winter Sundays’ narrator’s argument that -"what did I know, what did I know”-, which shows regrets the narrators reveals.
Secondly, the narrator tends to comprehend much on his past as far as his father’s love is concerned. Therefore, is it too late for that? Does the speaker stand a chance of revealing to his father that –"cracked hands that ached from labor”- was all a sign of love in the making? Similarly, in the real-life situation, a wide range of children n seem to assume the efforts utilized by their parents in bringing them up and shaping them into responsible human beings. There is the need for parent to sacrifice for their children in order to build a concrete foundation for their future. Additionally, these sacrifices should not be limited to nuclear families. It is of equal measure to extend a helping hand to other family members as well as friends and the community in general. From the 5th line of the poem, -"no one ever thanked him”-, this calls for the need of the beneficiaries to such help to consider appreciating all favors done for them regardless how small or huge they are.
Thirdly, it is very significant to consider as grownups how life could have been if it were not for our parents or guardians. Would it have turned good or bad for us? Such sacrifices by the parents for the children should be adequately appreciated and valued accordingly, since some day these children would some day became parents and would wish to deserve appreciation from their children as well. Therefore, learning how to play and play it right is a significant aspect and lesson learnt from "those winter Sundays" and can be utilized in the modern life. This would save children from future regrets such as those depicted by the narrator- "what did I know”.
Lastly, throughout this poem, the author utilizes diverse poetic techniques and approaches in delivering the message. The choice of words, as presented by the poet, leaves the reader with a conclusion that the narrator highly regretted his failure to comprehend the grave and solitary job environment that his father underwent. Apparently, the narrator now comprehends the impact that a minute "Thank You" could have had to his father. A tone of "if only" has been adequately presented throughout the poem to express the regrets by the narrator. From the phrases –"cold splintering, breaking”-the poet employs metaphors to aid the reader envisage the cold. Another significant metaphor is presented on the last part of second stanza -"And slowly I would rise and dress, fearing the chronic angers of that house”- which probably refers to other members of the family present. From these phrases, it is worthy argument that probably the entire family never went along accordingly. The phrase-"Indifferently”- probably refers to the sense of lack of concern for the father by any member of the family. This shows that the father’s emotions were being hurt on daily basis, regardless of not having any rest day for the sake of his family’s success. "Austere and lonely offices”- has be...
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