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“Those Winter Sundays” by Robert Hayden

Apr 1, 2019 at Literature Essays

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I have just read a poem called “Those Winter Sundays” by Robert Hayden. It was written in the early 1960s but is still relevant today. The poet tells us about a father-son relationship and all conflicting feelings that come with it.

I think that the poem has two main themes. The first one is love. The events described in the poem take place when the speaker is already a grown-up, but he tells us about his childhood. The speakers’ father works hard every day and gets up early even on Sundays in order to help his family. He lights the fireplace and polishes his kid's shoes instead of having a rest. The fathers’ behavior demonstrates a great love to his family, and this love is as warm as the fireplace in the house. I know that there is no relationship without complications, but everyone must understand that parents love us and try to do everything possible to make us happy. It becomes clear after reading the poem.

The second theme is regret. The speaker looks back at his childhood and understands that he did not pay attention to the fathers’ feelings. The character also feels ashamed, because no one ever thanked his dad for the work he did, and relatives spoke indifferently to the man. As for me, the poem teaches us to appreciate our parents for their concern and love. It also tells that, unfortunately, we might not understand this until we are older.

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Overall, I enjoy “Those Winter Sundays”, because the poem is written well and, despite the small size, has a deep meaning. I will say that it has opened my eyes to many problems between children and their parents. Therefore, I am going to read more poems written by Robert Hayden as a result of reading this.

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