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Fern Hill Analysis



Author: Poetry of Dylan Thomas Type: Poetry Views: 6599

Deaths and Entrances1946Now as I was young and easy under the apple boughs

About the lilting house and happy as the grass was green,The night above the dingle starry,Time let me hail and climbGolden in the heydays of his eyes,

And honoured among wagons I was prince of the apple towns

And once below a time I lordly had the trees and leavesTrail with daisies and barleyDown the rivers of the windfall light.And as I was green and carefree, famous among the barns

About the happy yard and singing as the farm was home,In the sun that is young once only,Time let me play and beGolden in the mercy of his means,

And green and golden I was huntsman and herdsman, the calves

Sang to my horn, the foxes on the hills barked clear and cold,And the sabbath rang slowlyIn the pebbles of the holy streams.All the sun long it was running, it was lovely, the hay

Fields high as the house, the tunes from the chimneys, it was airAnd playing, lovely and wateryAnd fire green as grass.And nightly under the simple stars

As I rode to sleep the owls were bearing the farm away,

All the moon long I heard, blessed among stables, the nightjarsFlying with the ricks, and the horsesFlashing into the dark.And then to awake, and the farm, like a wanderer white

With the dew, come back, the cock on his shoulder: it was allShining, it was Adam and maiden,The sky gathered againAnd the sun grew round that very day.

So it must have been after the birth of the simple light

In the first, spinning place, the spellbound horses walking warmOut of the whinnying green stableOn to the fields of praise.And honoured among foxes and pheasants by the gay house

Under the new made clouds and happy as the heart was long,In the sun born over and over,I ran my heedless ways,My wishes raced through the house high hay

And nothing I cared, at my sky blue trades, that time allows

In all his tuneful turning so few and such morning songsBefore the children green and goldenFollow him out of grace.Nothing I cared, in the lamb white days, that time wouldtake me

Up to the swallow thronged loft by the shadow of my hand,In the moon that is always rising,Nor that riding to sleepI should hear him fly with the high fields

And wake to the farm forever fled from the childless land.

Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means,Time held me green and dyingThough I sang in my chains like the sea.






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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

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Most takes on the poem that I have seen contend this is seen through the child\'s eyes, and is autobiographical. Neither is true, whatever the poet\'s intention. This is an adult imagining his childhood, or just the state of being a child, being green, and how nature could have been for him. The child does not think in those metaphors, those can only be evoked retrospectively.

| Posted on 2012-05-03 | by a guest


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When he says: “fire green as grass,” Thomas appears to be speaking of a change in perception, the speaker’s burning realization that he is changing, growing older, wiser. The lines: “like a wanderer white” and “in the lamb white days” are metaphors for his younger naïve days when he was a confused wanderer and white or innocent like the biblical lamb. He uses the color gold when referring to time as a metaphor for valuable time: “Golden… time let me play” and “Time… Golden in the mercy of his means.” Time itself, as it is personified in the poem, seems to be a metaphor for an authority figure who holds one’s life in his hands.

| Posted on 2009-09-26 | by a guest




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