Love Between Father and Son in Those Winter Sundays and Advice to My Son

April 13, 2021 by Essay Writer

Love has a different meaning for everyone. Love differs and expresses in many ways. Robert Hayden’s poem “Those Winter Sundays” and Peter Meinke’s poem, “Advice to My Son” shows that love can be expressed in different ways: guidance, understanding and sacrifices.

Robert Hayden’s poem “Those Winter Sundays” is about the perspective of love changes over time. At the first stanza, it recalls the father’s act who rises early to make fire or warmth in the house and polish the shoes of his son. While in the second stanza, the speaker which is the young child shows no concern or understanding about his father’s actions. In the third stanza, when the child gets older and more mature he finally understands the sacrifices of his father. He began to appreciate his father and realizes that he took his father’s love for granted. It can be seen in the poem when he says, “what did I know, what did I know”. At this point of the story, the father has passed away and the speaker realizes the unconditional love his father has to him but it is already too late. After reading the poem, I felt an emotional appeal and makes me realize all the sacrifices my parents have done. It also shows the concept of parental love and how it changes from a child to an adult. Parents continue to love their children no matter what even if they do not receive the recognition they deserve.

While in Peter Meinke’s poem, “Advice to My Son” presents a perspective from an older and more experienced person on how to live one’s life. The poem opens with the speaker suggesting to his son to live life to the fullest but also plan long-range. I agree with this point of view that people should live for the moment but also plan for the future. It is because we only have one life and one chance to live. Life can be unpredictable and there will be obstacles and consequences one may face in their lifetime. The speaker uses imagery which evokes a sense of visual and olfactory. Meinke says, “be specific, between the peony and the rose”. Peonies are similar to roses but peonies are not as common. It is more expensive and requires more care and nourishment than roses. The message of this line is for the son to understand the importance of making decisions and to never pass on if there is a greater opportunity. The speaker also uses alliteration in “plant squash and spinach, turnips and tomatoes”. This line has a deeper meaning because vegetables symbolize the action of a person. It means that we should wait for the time when we feel that is right to plant or do our actions. Meike says, “beauty is nectar, and nectar, in a desert, saves but the stomach craves stronger sustenance”. It means that it is necessary to take time to enjoy the beautiful aspects of life but at the same time, it has to be practical and critical.

Overall both poem shows how love can be shown and expressed in a father and son relationship. The poem “Advice to My Son”, taught me to live life to the fullest, make everyday memorable while still having a larger vision in mind. Our personal experiences and decisions will shape our values and beliefs as we progress in life. While “Those Winter Sundays”, helps me to appreciate my parents and loved ones more while it is not too late.

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