Autumn was written in the 19th Century by John Clark. It is a lyric poem with a rhyming scheme of a quatrain and a couplet and is a tribute to the month of Autumn intended to make us feel Autumn is the best month. It is in written in first person narrative which gives the poem a more personal feel as we are inside the consciousness of the poet. The title of the poem is straight to the point and tells us the poem is about Autumn.
The first technique I can find is the personification of the wind in line one. It says the wind is a ‘fitful gust’, and the word fitful makes us imagine a healthy and strong, yet playful person, so it is comparing the wind to a healthy and strong, yet playful person. Also in this phrase there is the alliteration of the letter ‘f’. F is a very drawn out sounding letter which emphasizes the fitful nature of the wind.
The next point of interest I can find is the way it says the wind takes the faded leaves from the ‘glossy elm-tree’. This implies that the wind is hard working, which is a contrast to the previous image we were given of it. This makes me think that the wind has both a playful and serious side, much like humans. Next it says the wind deposits the leaves ‘with thousands of others down the lane’. This reminds us of the summer, but also reminds us that it doesn’t last and that it leaves Autumn to do all the clearing up. This makes us think that Autumn is a good season, while summer isn’t.
The next technique I can find is one the first line of stanza 2. The poet says he sees ‘the shaking twig dance till the shut of eve’. This is personification of the twig as a twig cannot dance. This again makes us feel that Autumn is a playful season. Then it says the sparrow’s chirp would ‘make believe that spring was just now flirting by’. This suggests a dreamlike quality, as if spring isn’t a real month like autumn. Also in this quote is the phrase ‘flirting by’. This makes it seem as if Spring is just like a flirt, not really serious. This again makes us believe that spring isn’t a serious month and that autumn is better. Next it says hat spring is going to lie in summer’s lap. This makes it seem as if Spring and Summer are both lazy months and aren’t hard working like Autumn.
The next point of interest I can find is on the third stanza. It says the poet sees ‘the cottage smoke curl upwards through the trees. This is a very good description and it allows you to visualise the scene. After this, I cannot find any literary techniques until the first line of the fourth stanza. That line contains the phrase ‘The feather from the raven’s breast’. The raven is a symbol of death and decline and as such it tells us what to expect from the following stanza. I find it to be highly effective, though it is very subtle.
Next it says the acorns fall from the tree. This again makes us feel that the end of autumn is coming, though the acorns make us believe that everything will be renewed. This hope is stopped on the next line though, as it says the ‘grunting pigs’ eat the acorns. This closes the poem with a very effective sense of finality. This poem is quite effective in conveying that autumn is a good month as it uses a good variety of literary techniques in most of the poems to get the point across. The lack of techniques in the third stanza does let it down somewhat though. Also, I found the ending to be very effective as it was a great contrast with the rest of the poem which contained so much life.