The poem “These are the days when the birds come back” by Emily Dickinson is an essential piece in her collection. It delves into the course of nature and religion in a person’s life, reflecting the poet’s sullen melancholic mood and seclusion.
Summary of the Poem
Stanza 1: The Transition of Seasons
In this stanza, the poet describes how birds return during the transition from summer to fall. The unpredictability of nature fools the birds, but the changing seasons offer hope and renewal.
Stanza 2: Deceptive Skies
The second stanza highlights how the skies deceive with their changing hues. The poet finds amusement in the unpredictable nature of the world, drawing parallels between the deceptive nature of the skies and the unpredictability of life itself.
Stanza 3: Parallels between Nature and Religion
In this stanza, the poet explores the observation that bees are not fooled by false flowers in the fall. This leads to a contemplation of the relationship between nature and religion, questioning the validity of religious beliefs in the face of the natural world.
Stanza 4: The End of Summer
The fourth stanza depicts the end of summer, where flowers seed and birds migrate. The falling leaves twirling in the wind symbolize fleeting emotions, reflecting the transient nature of life.
Stanza 5: The Poet’s Religious Influence
In this stanza, the poet’s religious influence becomes apparent through words like “Sacrament” and “Last Communion.” She prays to nature, appealing for the prolongation of summer, blending her reverence for nature with her spiritual yearnings.
Stanza 6: Mockery of Religion and Embrace of Nature
The final stanza mocks religious rituals while embracing the beauty and abundance of nature. The poet symbolizes bread and wine, traditionally associated with religious rites, to represent the sustenance and richness found in the natural world.
Themes in the Poem
Nature plays a significant role in Emily Dickinson’s poetry, and this poem is no exception. Her unconventional style questions and offers a personal perspective on nature, emphasizing its beauty and complexity.
Unpredictability of Nature
The changing seasons and the deceptive appearances of nature reflect fleeting emotions and highlight the independent course of the natural world. Dickinson portrays nature as an unpredictable force that can both deceive and bring hope.
Dickinson questions the ideologies of the Puritan faith and uses religious elements to elucidate nature, placing nature on par with religion. The poem explores the intersections between religious beliefs and the wonders of the natural world.
The poem carries a reflective tone throughout, allowing the exploration of connections between nature and human beliefs. It invites readers to contemplate the complexities of life and the interplay between the natural and spiritual realms.
Analysis of the Poem
The analysis of “These are the days when the Birds come back” by Emily Dickinson delves into the theme of the deceptive appearance of time. The poem focuses on the transition from summer to fall, highlighting the unpredictability of nature during this period. It presents the beauty of external nature while emphasizing the deceptive nature of time itself.
The poet describes how the warmth of autumn creates an illusion of the return of summer. Birds and seeds are deceived into believing that real summer has arrived. However, the poet and a shrewd bee remain unconvinced by this deception. The poem suggests that this plausibility is nothing more than a fraud, a deceptive trick played by nature. Despite the poet’s initial belief induced by the plausibility of summer, she is aware of its fraudulent nature.
Moreover, the thought of summer evokes religious sentiments in the poet’s mind. She employs religious terminology such as “sacrament” and “consecrated bread” to describe the mysterious and sacred significance of summer. The poet’s request to participate in the Lord’s Supper symbolizes her desire to connect with the divine through the experience of summer. These religious sentiments serve to revive the poet’s faith, which was shattered by the false belief in the fraudulent possibility of summer described earlier in the poem.
Furthermore, Dickinson connects the changing of seasons to the hasty nature of human life. The poem reflects on how individuals, as they grow older, look back on their lives and yearn for the lost innocence of childhood, paralleling the birds in the poem. It highlights the folly of rushing through life without fully savoring the joys of childhood. The poem also explores the paradoxical desire to be adults when one is a child and the longing to be children again once adulthood is reached. Ultimately, the poem suggests that time and nature cannot be reversed, and death’s powerful grip cannot be denied.
In summary, “These are the days when the Birds come back” by Emily Dickinson presents the deceptive appearance of time during the end of summer and the beginning of fall. It explores themes of deception, religious sentiments, the fleeting nature of time, and the longing for lost moments in life. The poem invites readers to reflect on the interplay between nature, religion, and the complexities of human existence.
1. What is the significance of birds in the poem?
Birds symbolize the cyclical nature of life and the changing seasons. Their return represents the hope and renewal that come with the transition from summer to fall.
2. How does the poem explore the relationship between nature and religion?
The poem draws parallels between the deceptive appearances of nature and the questioning of religious beliefs. It uses religious terminology and imagery to describe nature, bringing nature on par with religion and raising contemplations about the validity of religious ideologies.
3. What is the overall tone of the poem?
The poem carries a reflective tone throughout. It encourages readers to contemplate the connections between nature and human beliefs, inviting introspection and a deeper understanding of life’s complexities.
4. How does the poem address the fleeting nature of time?
The changing seasons and the transient beauty of nature reflect the fleeting emotions and experiences of human life. The poem serves as a reminder that time is not stagnant and that moments and seasons pass quickly, emphasizing the importance of cherishing and fully experiencing each phase of life.
The poem invites readers to reflect on the transient beauty of nature, the complexities of religious faith, and the fleeting moments of human existence. It serves as a reminder to cherish each phase of life and to question the illusions that time can create. Dickinson’s reflective tone and insightful observations make this poem a timeless piece that continues to resonate with readers, inviting them to contemplate the connections between nature, religion, and the mysteries of life.