Essay on Spring and All by Carl Sandburg

664 Words3 Pages
‘ Spring and All’ by Williams Carlos Williams is a poem loaded with many concrete images; under the shade of deterioration and decay new life is being brought up. The poem begins by introducing the setting with the image of a ‘contagious hospital’. This image connects to the poet’s profession of a doctor back in time. Through this image the poet invites us to join his experienced point in a visual context. The speaker standing by the road observes the rotten landscape with the ‘dried’ and ‘dead leaves and trees’ after the cold winter. Albeit all this deterioration of the nature, through the winter, after comes the rebirth of life, the spring. The word choice the poet makes consists of the minimum amount of words needed to achieve the visualization of the poem. In the first stanza most of the words and with a consonant (mottled, cloud, wind, weed, dried) giving a sense that the poem is in a static mode, and every word functions as a single unit with its own meaning. Independent words supporting the imagist Williams, creating a cinematic effect, as if the eye moves from one thing to another; from the ‘contagious hospital’ to the trees, the fields, the bushes. Thus, in the 4th stanza the previous ‘leafless’ becomes ‘lifeless’, and there in just seven words the poet introduces spring and shifts from the complete decay to something new. The ‘naked’ coming to the world may indicate the existence of human being entering the new world like babies, and even further humanity. The sterility expressed in the first 3 stanzas, the stagnation of the ‘standing water’ welcomes the new, the spring, the sound of rebirth. It is of great importance to mention that the poem was written in 1923, one year after the famous ‘Wasteland’ by T.S Eliot. The reference to ‘leafs’ and in the line 5 ‘waste’ may implicate that Williams worked on his poem as an ironic response to Eliot’s
Open Document