Sunday, January 30, 2011

D.H. Lawrence's "Snake"

This poem is very interesting in the way it opens your eyes to some things that come to be accepted by humans that may not always be necessary or right. In this poem D.H. Lawrence comes across a snake that is drinking at his water trough and he has to wait until the snake is finished in order to fill his pitcher with water. The imagery that this poem creates is extremely detailed and allows the reader to become engrossed in the scene and really feel like they are watching it happen or even better are D.H. Lawrence admiring this subtlety in nature. It is important to note how he is in conflict with himself throughout the poem and can't exactly decide what his course of action needs to be.

I feel like the poem is about the beauty of nature and humans failure to really appreciate its beauty to the fullest. He is marveling at the snake and its beauty as it drinks from his water trough but is battling with himself because of what society has taught him to think and act towards snakes. He seems to be happy that his water trough was useful to the snake but knows that the majority of society feels hate toward the creature. It is as if he wrote this poem to show that there are things in nature that may be harmful if antagonized but it is important to not forget their role in nature and how beautiful they can be and understand they need the same things we do, his example is water on a very hot day.

The poem is extremely interesting to me after the point that he throws the log at the snake. This is because although he knew it was wrong and immediately regretted what he did he still conformed to the normal reaction of society toward a snake which is some type of hateful act to do it harm. I wonder if this is his why of keeping some objectivity in the poem and showing that even he can't help being scared to snakes and reacting rashly to seeing them at times but that we need to do a better job to appreciate the creatures. "And I thought of the albatross, and I wished he would come back, my snake" is a particularly interesting line. An albatross can be used to talk about an encounter with death which is interesting because this shows that he fully comprehends the danger of being close to a deadly snake but also longs to have the compassion in his heart to love such a creature.

Overall I liked the poem and thought he portrayed his experience in an enlightening way that allowed the reader to really get engrossed in the experience D.H. Lawrence had.

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