Thursday, June 7, 2012

'Leisure' by William Henry Davies (Episode 1)

William Henry Davies or W. H. Davies
  1. William Henry Davies or W. H. Davies (3 July 1871 – 26 September 1940) was a poet and writer.
  2. He travelled from place to place as a vagrant, traditionally walking all year round in the  United Kingdom and United States
  3. The principal themes in his work are the marvels of nature, observations about life's hardships, his own tramping adventures and the various characters he met.
  4.  He became known as one of the most popular poets of his time.
  5. William Henry Davies wrote Leisure, appearing originally in his Songs Of Joy and Others, published in 1911 by A. C. Fifield and then in Davies' first anthology Collected Poems, also published by Fifield in 1916.
  6. The poem is written as a set of seven rhyming couplets.
Leisure by William Henry Davies






What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows.
No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.
No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance.
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.
A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

'Leisure' by William Henry Davies (Episode 2)

Poem: Leisure
What is the poem all about?




Couplet 1:
What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

The poet questions the purpose of a life which is full of worries that it does not give us any space to simply stand still and watch the world go by.


Couplet 2:
No time to stand beneath the boughs
  And stare as long as sheep or cows.




People who live a hectic life would not possess the leisure to stand under the branches of trees and keep staring into space. However, sheep and cows can often be seen standing still in vast open fields and staring into a distance.


Couplet 3:
No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.


When people walk pass a forest, they would be in too much of a hurry to notice the nooks and crannies in the grass where squirrels hide their nuts.


Couplet 4:
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.


In daylight, rivers appear to be sparkling under the effect of sunshine as though the streams are full of stars like the night sky.


Couplet 5:
No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance.

The rush of life provides people with no leisure to turn at the glance of a beautiful girl and marvel at her dancing feet.


Couplet 6:
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.

They are unable to leisurely observe her as her mouth shapes out a smile that started from her eyes.


Couplet 7:
A poor life this is if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

A life which is so tied down by worries that it allows one no time for leisure is indeed a miserable life. It means that we have a poor life if we have no time to relax physically or mentally.








Tuesday, June 5, 2012

'Leisure' by William Henry Davies (Episode 3)

Synopsis of the Poem
 
  1. Life should not be about working so much that we have no time to relax and enjoy the beauty of nature.
  2. We are so caught up in our work routine and hectic schedule that we do not know how to break away.
  3. We should slow down and take a look at things around us because life goes by very fast and we do not want to miss a thing.
  4. Sometimes, the mind should be free of work stress so that we can we enjoy the beauty of the little pleasures of life.
  5. All of us get so caught up in the ways of the world that we become emotionally blind to what is going on.
  6. We are not alert of our surroundings.
  7. We focus so much on the things that bring us trouble and not enough time on what makes us happy.
  8. Life becomes meaningless if we do not learn to set aside time for ourselves and our families.

 

 

Monday, June 4, 2012

'Leisure' by William Henry Davies (Episode 4)

More about the Poem

1. Setting
  • Set in the countryside
  • Persona wonders why people are so busy that they let life to pass them by and do not make any effort to appreciate the beauty of nature.

2. Imagery
  • stream full of stars – gives the picture of a stream shimmering under the sun.
  • Beauty has ‘feet, how they can dance’ and ‘enrich that smile’ gives the picture of a beautiful, graceful woman.

 


3. Simile
  • “And stare as long as sheep or cows”
  • “Like stars at night”

 



4. Themes
  • We should take time off from our daily work to enjoy nature.
  • Nature has many beautiful things that we can appreciate if we take the trouble and time.
  • Learn to relax and enjoy the simple pleasure of life.
  • Learn to observe the little and beautiful things around us.
  • Enrich and expand our minds with the beauty of nature.

5. Moral values
  • We need to take advantage of our free time to live a better lifestyle.
  • We should use leisure creatively to strengthen our minds and hearts.
  • We should take note of the beautiful things around us.
  • Enrich and expand our minds with the beauty of nature.