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The Caged Skylark Analysis

Author: poem of Gerard Manley Hopkins Type: poem Views: 5

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As a dare-gale skylark scanted in a dull cage

  Man's mounting spirit in his bone-house, mean house, dwells—

  That bird beyond the remembering his free fells;

This in drudgery, day-labouring-out life's age.

Though aloft on turf or perch or poor low stage,

  Both sing sometímes the sweetest, sweetest spells,

  Yet both droop deadly sómetimes in their cells

Or wring their barriers in bursts of fear or rage.

Not that the sweet-fowl, song-fowl, needs no rest—

Why, hear him, hear him babble and drop down to his nest,

   But his own nest, wild nest, no prison.

Man's spirit will be flesh-bound when found at best,

But uncumbered: meadow-down is not distressed

  For a rainbow footing it nor he for his bónes rísen.


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

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hello, this is my great great great uncle who wrote this poem. I analyzed this poem and what i felt was that the bird represents him in some way, being stuck in a cage, if you notice the dull cage in the first stanza you will know it means prison, \"the bird beyond the remembering his free fells...\" which can mean the the bird feels trapped and can remember when the bird felt free. and when he went to his nest he felt free, not in a prison. and the man who owns the bird feels the same.

| Posted on 2012-04-18 | by a guest

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| Posted on 2012-01-22 | by a guest

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The Caged Skylark expresses the Christian theme of being set free of sin by the resurrection of Christ. The first two stanzas display an image of the human spirit trapped inside it's body like a bird in a cage, it talks about humans living in this prison with small moments of great happiness that succumb to the larger periods of pain and suffering.
The last two stanzas flip the image. After talking about the Skylark, miserable in it's cage one's first thought would be that the best thing for the bird would be to be set free from the cage. But Hopkins puts forward the idea that the bird and our souls will need a home, so when we are set free our bodies and the bird's cage would no longer be prisons, the bird would make a nest as it's new home but would still have space to fly and freedom, and in resurrection our bodies would be light and free.
The Caged Skylark takes great use in imagery and alliteration, and Hopkins portrays the theme of religion that he has used in many of his poems, the first eight to ten lines express dark imagery, using harsh and ominous words such as bone-house, drudgery and rage. This changes in the last stanza, portraying an image of a rainbow free in a meadow, saying that our body will be no burden to our soul as a rainbow is no burden to a meadow, and the free bird dropping down to his own nest, his "wild nest" reinforcing the theme of freedom after transformation, resurrection and release, the human body is not limited, is "uncumbered" by it's heaviness, it's bones and it's flesh, and is ultimitely weightless and will rise and be free, just like a skylark being released from it's cage and given a nest.

| Posted on 2009-03-26 | by a guest

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In short this is a commentary on the entrapment of our souls (the skylark) in our physical bodies. the Christian belief in resurrection in the final paragraph where even though we will still have our bodies they will be of no burden to us as a rainbow is no burden to a meadow.

| Posted on 2009-03-11 | by a guest

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this poem is very confusing and it would be great if someone would help people even understand the poem itself.

| Posted on 2008-11-30 | by a guest

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