Could someone please explain the stresses in this poem. For example 'all trades' has stresses on the 'a's. I would like to understand the poem fully to get the best from it. See below.
Glory be to God for dappled things -
For skies of coupled colour as a brinded cow;
For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut falls; finches’ wings;
Landscape plotted and pieced - fold, fallow and plough;
And, áll trádes, their gear and tackle and trim.
All things counter, original, spare, strange;
Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change.
Sprung Rhythm A unique system of meter devised by Gerard Manley Hopkins and evident in poems such as Pied Beauty and The Windhover. In Sprung rhythm one stressed syllable can make up a foot e.g. in Pied Beauty:
With SWIFT,|- SLOW:|- SWEET,|- SOUR;|a DAZZ| le, DIM
Hopkins referred to the unstressed syllables in the line as 'hangers' or 'outrides'. The above line also demonstrates Hopkins use of alliteration.
GMH was writing in a time when regular meter was generally regarded as an essential feature of poetry. We have since got used to poems in which the rhythm is made up of beats per line, rather than of syllabic meter.
GMH was concerned to get his readers away from trying to find syllabic meter in his lines, and to focus instead on the beats, which reflected the weight and importance he placed on certain words. That is why he went as far as to put strange accents over some of the vowels.
An experienced reciter of poems has no difficulty in understanding what GMH was getting at, and making his language impactful and moving to listeners, because recitation is closer to music, in which a single note can constitute a whole bar. GMH's words are carefully selected for their meaning and relevance. Voice modulation can do justice to that.
Which of course is not to deny that some of his poems are more successful than others. That's true of any poet. 'Pied Beauty' is one of his best.
Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/05/2008 05:39PM by IanAKB.