G&T poetry

Nothing Gold can stay by Robert Frost

Nature’s first green is gold, Her hardest hue to hold. Her early leaf’s a flower; But only so an hour. Then leaf subsides to leaf. So Eden sank to grief, So dawn goes down to day. Nothing gold can stay.

Change by Kathleen Jessie Raine

Said the sun to the moon,

You cannot stay.


Says the moon to the waters,

All is flowing.


Says the fields to the grass,

Seed-time and harvest,

Chaff and grain.

You must change said,

Said the worm to the bud,

Though not to a rose,

Petals fade

That wings may rise

Borne on the wind.

You are changing

said death to the maiden, your wan face

To memory, to beauty.

Are you ready to change?

Says the thought to the heart, to let her pass

All your life long

For the unknown, the unborn

In the alchemy

Of the world’s dream?

You will change,

says the stars to the sun,

Says the night to the stars.


(Sorry, if this piece is lackluster, I’ll be honest I have trouble writing about poetry. Partly because I find the romanticized writing and ideas to be tedious in analysis and generally soporific in nature and partly because I’m not Danish)

Change is a constant in everyone’s life, as much as we would like to change and have full control we must swallow our anxieties and take comfort in a system, institution or entity in life that is a constant. Three comparative paragraphs shall compose of these three ideas that are being conveyed in the two poems. The three being relevance, device, and change.  The relevancy that both poems have on the outsiders, how the ideas of the three texts are similar to one another.

The traditionalist poetic devices are remarkably absent from both pieces. Only really using alliteration, assonance, metaphor and repetition. Lastly, Both these poems are similar in the sense that they both highlight the change of individualistic happenings of change and worry, they also both use nature as analogies.

The outsiders has many themes which all play off one another. However, change is a theme that will puzzle even the most laborious individual, for change happens in the story with the running away and the enlightenment of likeness in PonyBoy and to a lesser extent Johnny, but by the end of the book it shows us a cycle that cannot be broken. However, Robert Frost’s poem that is shown in the book gives us a subtle apprise into what the author was trying to communicate. (I may be horribly over analyzing this, but hear me out) The poem details the clockwork of human nature in the circumstance of nurture behaviorism, like much of gang violence at the time in the sixties (especially the Skinhead movements) in was just needless violence because of systemic issues of difference. I believe what the poem was trying to communicate with us that no matter how far PonyBoy and Johnny go, and how they try to differ themselves from the city gang violence and how peaceful (or gold) that they may be they will always be in an endless cycle of violence, no matter how minor. And the most prevalent line in the poem “Nothing gold can stay” symbolizes the eventual death of Johnny, the return of PonyBoy to the gang, the rumble and generally the mentality by the end of the book that is no different from the start of the book.

Nothing gold can stay uses aspects of both alliteration and assonance in words like leaf and grief. And uses powerful imagery but many prospects of traditional poetry are gone such as repetition and stanzas. I would have enjoyed to see more repetition in the poem, it would have added a more chilling effect every time “nothing gold can stay” was uttered. In “change” the conventions of poetry were completely thrown out. But whilst it didn’t follow exact convention (besides the use of repetition and assonance) however it uses great use of imagery to relate back to a very broad point so that everyone can use personal experience. They both use unconventional poetic styles. But they both use similar words to create a flow.

These poems use nature as an analogy for change because, the authors wanted to highlight that every living creature experience change in a near-clockwork state and that things like say, growing up is inevitable and must happen as detailed in “Her early leaf’s a flower; But only so an hour.” in Frost’s poem and Said the sun to the moon, You cannot stay. Change” in Raine’s poem. It is also detailed that the leisure and luxury that we face as an institution must one day go. That even in nature, peace and harmony is not a clockwork feature of the human endeavor and that hedonism on all the fruits of life will eventually stop and the individual shall return to the monotony of their life. However “change” proposed that also through the struggles of your life you shall change to reach enlightenment in ways of practice and clockwork, however not nature.

In finality, we see that the use of poetry in media creates an undertone of the physiological intrigue of what is happening to the characters, in this book it shows us that the cycle of the human psyche is that of nature working in clockwork with nurture to unleash the human prejudice. And that no matter how far you go, and how your ideology changes you are still prone to hate, bias and mentality of your upbringing.

And now, I have created my own cringe edgy teenage poem just to demonstrate how well I did in primary school English class.

From moving to disapproving

Glooming all the way

From growing up to growing old

Fear is destined to behold

A glint of light so far away

Which grows stronger everyday

You manage to convince yourself

That soon the light shall pass

Lights will come back

And like a knife it leaves you manged and you realise.

Change is the essence of life

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