And nightly under the simple stars As I rode to sleep the owls were bearing the farm away, All the moon long I heard, blessed among stables, the nightjars Flying with the ricks, and the horses Flashing into the dark. But it's not exactly free verse, either. We can't read each stanza that comes without thinking of it in terms of the sounds and images of the last. About a quarter of a mile on your right is the leafy entrance to Fern Hill Farm. And I am dumb to tell the crooked rose My youth is bent by the same wintry fever. The speaker talks about the landscape with such reverence, he believes it to be sacred.
And then to awake, and the farm, like a wanderer white With the dew, come back, the cock on his shoulder: it was all Shining, it was Adam and maiden, The sky gathered again And the sun grew round that very day. All the sun long it was running, it was lovely, the hay Fields high as the house, the tunes from the chimneys, it was air And playing, lovely and watery And fire green as grass. Stanzas 1-3 'Fern Hill' by Dylan Thomas was first published in 1946. And then to awake, and the farm, like a wanderer white With the dew, come back, the cock on his shoulder: it was all Shining, it was Adam and maiden, The sky gathered again And the sun grew round that very day. The first line of ' Fern Hill' says, 'Now as I was young and easy under the apple boughs. During this period of success, Thomas also began a habit of alcohol abuse. Greens, golds, rivers, stars—it's all popping up again and again, to create a dreamlike sense of this youth's pastoral world.
This poem could be considered a coming of age poem, because it depicts the transition from childhood to adulthood. A pity there are about a dozen-odd words missing in the last three lines of the first stanza, as a result whereof the last but one line is completely missing. This lesson contains a summary of the poem, an explanation of some of the poem's more significant lines, and a discussion of the major themes. And honoured among foxes and pheasants by the gay house Under the new made clouds and happy as the heart was long, In the sun born over and over, I ran my heedless ways, My wishes raced through the house high hay And nothing I cared, at my sky blue trades, that time allows In all his tuneful turning so few and such morning songs Before the children green and golden Follow him out of grace, Nothing I cared, in the lamb white days, that time would take me Up to the swallow thronged loft by the shadow of my hand, In the moon that is always rising, Nor that riding to sleep I should hear him fly with the high fields And wake to the farm forever fled from the childless land. Lines 42-45 And nothing I cared, at my sky blue trades, that time allows In all his tuneful turning so few and such morning songs Before the children green and golden Follow him out of grace.
That means that our oh so nostalgic speaker fills in plenty of details about what Fern Hill looked like. They eventually settled at Laugharne, in the Boat House where Thomas would write many of his later poems. On November 9, 1953, he died at St. But don't take my word for it, just listen to Mr Thomas himself: Now as I was young and easy under the apple boughs About the lilting house and happy as the grass was green, The night above the dingle starry, Time let me hail and climb Golden in the heydays of his eyes, And honoured among wagons I was prince of the apple towns And once below a time I lordly had the trees and leaves Trail with daisies and barley Down the rivers of the windfall light. In fact, Thomas peppers every stanza in the poem with these qualities, so keep an eye or ear out as you read. The sing-songy feel of the poem is impossible to miss.
At the time, she was the mistress of painter Augustus John. Imagine asking one of your friends what they did last summer, and your friend busts out a 54-line description of where they were. No doubt, earlier on in the poem, the speaker gets caught up in remembering the landscape of his youth. Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means, Time held me green and dying Though I sang in my chains like the sea. We've said adios to the fantasy of endless youth, and the landscape is folding up and heading out. Now that we've reached the end of the second stanza, we're starting to realize it looks an awful lot like the first.
The speaker name drops the first man, Adam, and the maiden, Eve. At least, in this case, he's using his power for good by allowing the kid to play. The child is naïve about something, and line 13 provides the first hint the child does not yet understand time. Line 21 describes this time as 'playing, lovely. But no matter which way you slice it, you can't deny that this young prince was more than a little naïve. It's a bit jarring, too, which is an effective reminder that it's about time we wake up.
Could this be a hint at what's to come in the final? But don't take my word for it, just listen to Mr Thomas himself: Now as I was young and easy under the apple boughs About the lilting house and happy as the grass was green, The night above the dingle starry, Time I recently came across one of my favourite poems by Dylan Thomas on a poster at the Welsh Folk Life Museum and it made me want to revisit his poetry in more depth. Earlier in the poem, Time was like a watchful guardian, spoiling the speaker with the illusion of an eternity of happiness and joy, all green and golden. Line 30 depicts the farm as 'Adam and maiden. Many regard him as one of the 20th century's most influential poets. That's anaphora at its best, ladies and gentlemen.
Stanzas 4-6 In the fourth stanza, the child awakens to the rooster. Fern Hill was a country house and farm where Ann Jones, the poet's aunt, lived. The stanza ends with the child wasting time, skipping stones in a stream on a Sunday afternoon. He had become a legendary figure, both for his work and the boisterousness of his life. What this tells us is that Thomas isn't just about creating unity within stanzas—he's all about creating unity between stanzas, too. They're shorter, but they stick with scene setting like the opening two lines.
Is our speaker doomed to be cast out of this farm, just like Adam and Eve found themselves kicked out of Eden? Not that he's or anything. Another great performance by Richard Burton. Nothing I cared, in the lamb white days, that time would take me Up to the swallow thronged loft by the shadow of my hand, In the moon that is always rising, Nor that riding to sleep I should hear him fly with the high fields And wake to the farm forever fled from the childless land. The speaker comes to understand the nature of time and realizes that time has been passing for him even though he has been unaware. In the poem, the speaker fondly remembers his days on the farm, and he marvels at the happy innocence of his childhood. The passage of time and how humans relate to it is also a prominent theme of this poem. Fascinated by language, he excelled in English and reading but neglected other subjects.
Contact: Copyright for the works of Dylan Thomas on this site © 1937, 1945, 1955, 1956, 1962, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1971, 1977 The Trustees for the Copyrights of Dylan Thomas. As we read, we, too, are constantly circling back, which conveniently mimics the speaker's obsession with his own past. So what does that mean? A person who is green is new or naïve. So each stanza has the exact same number of lines with the exact same number of syllables in each line. They both have nine lines, and each of those lines has a certain number of syllables, depending on where it falls in the stanza. And the poem's playful sounds and language only mirror that emotion, adding music and jauntiness to the poem's lines.