Essay on Snowstorm: Ralph Waldo Emerson and Snowstorm

Submitted By rachelleez
Words: 576
Pages: 3

In “The Snowstorm,” Ralph Waldo Emerson examines the value of nature and its relation to each individual. Unlike the assumption one might make based on the title, the speaker illustrates the snowstorm as the true artist. When the sun appears, there is the trace of the snowstorm in the form of a beautiful artwork. Emerson delineates Romantic sentiment of the powers discovered in the natural world that humankind could witness. By utilizing irony and an extended metaphor, the speaker expresses the snowstorm as an uncontrollable over soul who connects the individual soul through intuition.
The ironic character of the snowstorm is at first a hindering block, but come to realize the artistry and creative supremacy of Nature in this organic poem. The first impression of the poem begins with excitement and awe as the storm is glorified and welcomed by “the trumpets of the sky” (1). Similar to one with authority, the snowstorm sweeps in “and veils the farmhouse at the garden’s end/ the sled and traveler stopped, the courier’s feet/ delayed, all friends shut out, the housemates sit” (5-7) with power and ambition. The presence of the snow halts all movements and naturally forces all things to revere it. In this way, nature is a greater, unstoppable force, in which humans have no control over. The second stanza personifies the snowstorm as an artist, who in the end creates an amazing “architecture of snow.” The speaker continues, “A swan-like form invests the hidden thorn” (19). The “fierce” “mad wind” is hidden beneath an elegant, “fanciful” awe-inspiring piece of work. Nonetheless, the structure of the poem in a blank verse reflects the theme and effect of the snow as it envelopes everything in an organized way. In addition to the irony, the depiction of the north-wind as a mason evokes a deeper meaning that nature is not about destruction, but creativity.
An extended metaphor of the snowstorm as a sculptor valuing the storm as a divine being assists in binding the separate individuals together. “Round every wayward stake, or tree, or door” (14), the snowstorm as a mason to constructs a masonry. The first stanza refers to a “traveler,” “hills and woods, the