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Hard Frost
Frost called to the water Halt
And crusted the moist snow with sparkling salt;
Brooks, their one bridges, stop,
And icicles in long stalactites drop.
And tench in water-holes
Lurk under gluey glass like fish in bowls.

In the hard-rutted lane
At every footstep breaks a brittle pane,
And tinkling trees ice-bound,
Changed into weeping willows, sweep the ground;
Dead boughs take root in ponds
And ferns on windows shoot their ghostly fronds.

But vainly the fierce frost
Interns poor fish, ranks trees in an armed host,
Hangs daggers from house-eaves
And on the windows ferny ambush weaves;
In the long war grown warmer
The sun will strike him dead and strip his armour.
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Likes: Marc W. Kohler, Richa7, Jjccaa1236, Va-pesin, Salem Macanbhai9, Toonishbean, Kain Smith, Nitya Darshan
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Older comments
Jasonlavallee6 - Its okay.

Lovely
a month ago 
Nitya Darshan - Lovely.

Lovely
a month ago 
Marc W. Kohler - I had to look up "tench".  This captures the frost as it used to be.  We had ice storms on a regular basis, and skidding, falling, and tumbling came with the territory.  You give that sun lots of power.  Nice work. Thanks 

Keep writing!
a month ago 
-
I love this poem
I'm guessing there is a main theme of war.  The words used suggest that "shoot" "daggers" "ambush" "war" "strike him dead and strip his armour" there is a theme.  I also love the way that there are three stanzas, one stanza is neutrally reporting the facts about the frost, the second stanza is painting a beautiful picture of frost, no doubt by frost himself, and the third stanza is written from the suns view, as if frost were an evil villain.
The sounds are also good.
hard sounds = ice crunching
soft sounds = water (melted ice) flowing
10 years ago 
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Oldpoetry2 - Apart from the typo
Brooks, their one bridges, stop
instead of
Brooks, their own bridges, stop
This appears to be as intended. It's even the version quoyed in a recent English GCSE type exam.
However it is quite possible that the author (or editor) changed his mind after seeing the poem in print and altered it in later editions and publications. Several famous authors are well known for such ammendments and several unscrupulous editors too.
Jim
10 years ago 
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- From guest David Wathen (contact)
Many, many years ago, I learnt this poem from memory for a Poetry Society exam. It is a poem that has stayed with me all my life, but the words I remember in verse one vary significantly from those included here. I recall lines 3 - 6 as follows - "Now, runnells scarcely crawl And icicles in long stalactites fall Whilst tench in water-holes Lurk under gluey glass like fish in bowls" The majority of these lines are as per above and any minor differences can be put down to aberrations in my memory (youthful or present), but line three is distinctly different.
10 years ago 
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- From guest anominus (contact)
this is great imaginitive poem with description
10 years ago 
- From guest c stones (contact)
I like this poem, it's cold and stark just like frosty cold days you often experience in the open countryside.
10 years ago 
- From guest Asia (contact)
immence in a bad way
10 years ago 
- From guest ace (contact)
very imagineitive
10 years ago 
- From guest tavish (contact)
i'm doing this for english and i have to evaluate it but it is so hard
10 years ago 
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Comments from the archive
- From guest daniel (contact)
when was it written
11 years ago 
- From guest Bea (contact)
we are learning this poem in english gifted and talented. although i like the image, most of the words are hard to understand as they are written in an older language.
11 years ago 
- From guest Carrie Logan (contact)
We are doing an essay on this on school it is a really good poem.
11 years ago 
- From guest henry jacobs (contact)
i have the original poem and it says
and crusted the moist snow with sparkling salt

(thanks for the correction--Oldpoetry Team)
11 years ago 
- From guest bob (contact)
Frost called to the water Halt And crushed the moist snow with sparkling salt; Brooks, their one bridges, stop, And icicles in long stalactites drop. And tench in water-holes Lurk under gluey glass like fish in bowls. In the hard-rutted lane At every footstep breaks a brittle pane, And tinkling trees ice-bound, Changed into weeping willows, sweep the ground; Dead boughs take root in ponds And ferns on windows shoot their ghostly fronds. But vainly the fierce frost Interns poor fish, ranks trees in an armed host, Hangs daggers from house-eaves And on the windows ferny ambush weaves; In the long war grown warmer The sun will strike him dead and strip his armour.
12 years ago 
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- From guest Aspi (contact)
The poem hard frost is trying to create a milatary image to us, with all the very commanding orders, for example at the very beggining, "HALT"! is used to command the water to stop and it is now under his control by himself freezing it over, so that may answer some questions. thank-you.
12 years ago 
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- From guest amy (contact)
well done i like it love amy xxxxxxxx
12 years ago 
- From guest Chantelle (contact)
i dont get hte main idea of this poem ... can somebody help me?? :) THANKKKKS
14 years ago 
I-Like-Rhymes - It is hard to have one without the other! In this case (lines 5 and 6 BTW) it is both, even though the rhyme is internal ie not the conventional end rhyme.
14 years ago 
- From guest Madison (contact)
in the fourth and sixth line in stanza 2, does shoot and root count as rhyme or assonance?
14 years ago 
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