Although Frost only wrote four rimmed pullets, he has created an explosion of genius throughout his poem, completely and in detail with so few words Frost describes life while using seasonal change as his symbolism. The syntax of the poem is not understood so easily at first but when the season changes are made clear the idea of a life-cycle becomes clearer because Frost made it so that the two can be easily related to one another. “Nature’s first green is gold” (1), clearly the poem’s setting is nature but we are talking about nature’s first green, which usually is related to spring.
Spring is the young and adolescent years of life, or the “golden” years before maturity. Frost also conveys the idea of morning, when the sun rises and shines light on the earth making everything a little bit more gold than normal. “Her hardest hue to hold” (2), Now that Frost has made it clear that nature is gold before it is green, he goes on to say that gold is the hardest color for nature to keep. Notice the rhyme scheme in this poem is very clear and sing-song like. The poem’s first rhyme couplet is formed in line 1 and 2 with “gold” and “hold”.
This poem follows the abscond rhyme scheme and it is easily noticed throughout the poem. Because the first two lines have the same number of syllables the reader an predict there is a meter, an iambic trimester. The idea of nature having a hard time holding onto something is an example of personification because nature is given human characteristics. Nature is not only being personified here but it is actually made in to a female figure because Frost uses the word her in line two, as shown above.
There is also the use of alliteration with the letter H and the words her, hardest, hue, and hold and because the lines of the poem are so short, Frost is actually forcing the reader to slow down and read it slower to gain a greater understanding of the lines. Her early leafs a flower;” (3), elaborating on line 1, Frost becomes more clear with his transitions because in spring, trees bloom with flowers and then those flowers fall off and are replaced by green leaves in the summer. This is symbolism for the transitioning years into adulthood and maturity.
Not only is line 3 symbolism but it is also a consonance because the word leaf is repeated. This poem is actually a huge example of figurative language. Line 4 ends the first season, spring. “But only so an hour” (4), is also Jumping back to line, the first four lines of the poem are all tied together. Because nature’s first green, gold, does not stay then neither does the flower, because remember “nothing gold can stay’ (8), meaning all beautiful things will die and a flower is usually seen as beautiful.
So the flower falls off and the leaf comes in signaling the seasonal change and transition into old age and the last stretch of someone’s life. “Then leaf subsides to leaf. So Eden sank to grief” (5, 6), this line explains what happens after the flower becomes a true leaf. Notice the assonance in these two lines and the internal rhyme. Frost uses the word subsides instead of becomes because in society people believe that young, old, and beautiful is key and as individuals reach middle to old age they are no longer important or viewed as beautiful.
Flowers are “gold” and they cannot stay for very long in this world. The word gold in this poem can also be used as symbolism because the word gold represents beauty but Frost makes it very clear that beauty and youth is only brief in this life because like the flowers, all things grow old and die and all people will eventually die. So like the flower falling off and being pushed aside because it is getting “older” or because they are less beautiful, it makes room for the new leaf.
Although it may seem sad when the beautiful flower falls from the tree there can possibly be an upside, or Frost is Just being blunt and saying that it is simply the way of life and all good things must come to an end and no one can change that because it is simply a fact of life. “So dawn goes down to day’ (7), notice frost uses slant rhyme in this line with the words dawn and down. In this line frost is comparing the rising of the sun or dawn going to mid-day.
Dawn would be considered more beautiful because it is fresh and new and the early ‘golden” light on everything makes it more lovely, but when the sun rises to mid-day the newness has Ron off and do remember the seasonal change to summer after line 4, mid-day is hot and day is considered a lower level and that is why Frost used the word down to signify the decrease of importance. This is similar to the way people are viewed as they get older as well, Just like in previous lines.
Finally “Nothing gold can stay’ (8), this line is connects the reader to the title. This line wraps up all Frost’s use of metaphors throughout the poem like the early spring leaves and flowers, the Garden of Eden, and dawn are all considered to be gold but none of them can stay or live in this world forever. Frost makes it clear to his reader in the last line that nothing good can last forever but hopefully the reader can take from this poem and appreciate something that is good while they still have it.