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Colours in spring

The poet Gerard Manley Hopkins begins his poem, by giving a simple judgement about spring, there is nothing more beautiful. The speaker associates the weeds of spring, which grow up in great numbers, with wheels. This is a strange connection, but the important association is to do with motion. Everything is moving. The weeds are “long and lovely and lush.” 

“Nothing is so beautiful as Spring –          

When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;”     

Spring has an energy and vibrancy with the new leaves and buds appearing it is a show of beauty and the power of nature .

I feel that I view a lot of my daily life looking at bright and zesty colours which conjure up the essence of spring? From everyday plant life changing colours and shapes, which I want to convey in my work.

Mixing colours is not something i have really studied in great detail. I shall research artists who deal with colour like Matisse and Gerhard Richter.

I also researched some poetry about spring I discovered this poem by

Emily Dickinson, ‘A Light Exists in Spring‘.

Written in around 1864 but not published until 1896 (as with many of Dickinson’s poems), ‘A Light Exists in Spring’ beautifully captures the way that spring slowly appears in our consciousness, like a light in the distance. She seems to acknowledge what we call ‘SAD’ or Seasonal Affective Disorder, with the passing of spring affecting our contentedness.

The poet seems to say how she can almost interact with the light, and the beauty of nature which the light opens her eyes to.

A Light exists in Spring by Emily Dickinson

A Light exists in Spring Not present on the Year At any other period — When March is scarcely here

A Color stands abroad On Solitary Fields That Science cannot overtake But Human Nature feels.

It waits upon the Lawn, It shows the furthest Tree Upon the furthest Slope you know It almost speaks to you.

Then as Horizons step Or Noons report away Without the Formula of sound It passes and we stay —

A quality of loss Affecting our Content As Trade had suddenly encroached Upon a Sacrament.

This poem is in the public domain.

Emily Dickinson (1830 – 1886) is considered a major American poet, though she was not accorded this honor until well after her death, when her younger sister discovered and began to share the enormous body of work that Emily left behind. A recluse who almost always wore white, Emily was born to a prominent Massachusetts family and spent the bulk of her life inside her home in Amherst. Only seven of her poems were published during her lifetime, and virtually none were published as originally written until the mid 1950s. (Emily’s odd punctuation, capitalization, and formatting did not meet with standard publishing “approval” for earlier editions.) There is a whimsical nature to many of her poems, although the subject of death was the most frequent recurring theme.

I found this poem resonate with me about how the essence of nature has a strong effect on our own feelings. Since spending the last year working outside at the Covid Test site (rain ,snow, sleet, blazing sunshine) i have really enjoy the sensations of the elements of natures power. I want to be able to achieve this in my work through line, form and colour.

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