Monday, December 31, 2012

"Leisure"....What is William Henry Davies trying to tell us?

by William Henry Davies.

In this poem, the poet asks us to look at our busy lives which leave us with no time for leisure.

The poem ‘Leisure’ has 7 rhyming couplets.

Couplet 1:

The poet questions the purpose of a life which is so full of worry. We are kept busy all the time. We cannot even stand still and watch the world go by.

Couplet 2:

Sheep and cows can often be seen standing still in vast open fields and staring into a distance. However, busy people do not have the time to stand under the branches of trees and enjoy watching the nature.

Couplet 3:

When busy people pass a forest (woods), they would be in too much of a hurry to notice the beauty of nature around them. They would not be able to notice the squirrels hiding the nuts in the grass.

Couplet 4:

If you look at the streams during daylight, streams appear to be sparkling under the effect of sunshine. It looks as if the streams are full of stars like the night sky. However, busy people  would not notice such beauty.

Couplets 5 and 6:

The poet states that the rush of life provides people with no leisure to turn at the glance of a beautiful maiden and marvel at her dancing feet. They are unable to leisurely observe her as her mouth shapes out a smile that started from her eyes. 

Another interpretation: The dancing feet and enchanting smile refers to various aspects of the beauty around us.

Couplet 7:

The life which is so full of worries is indeed a miserable life.


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