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How Does Frost and Wordsworth Convey the Contrast of Innocence and Experience of Life Through Nature in Birches and Nutting?

  • Date Submitted: 04/08/2013 07:02 AM
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How does Frost and Wordsworth convey the contrast of innocence and experience of life through nature in Birches and Nutting?

The contrast between innocence and experience is conveyed by Frost and Wordsworth in their poems Birches and Nutting. In Nutting, William Wordsworth uses the memories of him as a young boy going 'Nutting' as a metaphor for the journeys experienced in life which can withdraw our innocence as we mature. Birches, written by Robert Frost uses nature to show how life is constant and regular and thus the cycle of life is unstoppable movement. Frost uses the innocence 'some boy' to connect with nature, and although throughout the poem the 'boy's' innocence can make him seem vulnerable to life’s challenges, described as 'cobwebs', he refuses to give in. Like in another Frost poem Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening he says 'I have promises to keep' and therefore his poetry conveys the importance of the contrast between innocence and experience in life which give him the strength to not give in to his duties.
Nutting is a pastoral narrative poem published in 1800, with five sections that each have a different meaning. Wordsworth uses sexual imagery like 'tall and erect' throughout to the convey the contrast between innocence and experience. The narrator is reminiscing back to when he collected nuts in his childhood using words such as 'unvisited' to describe nature which symbolises his virginity as a boy. Nutting tells the story of a boy who goes out into the wood and returns after loosing his innocence after the experience that nature has caused him to endure.
Similarly, Frost also uses nature to convey the contrast of innocence and experience through the alliteration in 'turn many-colored as the stir cracks and crazes their enamel', the harsh sounds of' 'cr' is repeated to place emphasis on the turmoil you feel as an adult that you don't experience in youth. 'enamel' is mentioned to paint a pretty picture of a glossy coating for protection...

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