Uphill: Poetry and Traveler

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  • Topic: Poetry, Christina Rossetti, Answer
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  • Published : January 29, 2012
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Christia Rosetti--"Uphill" Poetry Analysis
“Uphill” in Depth

Symbolism, by definiton, is an artistic imitation or invention that is a method of revealing or suggesting immaterial, ideal, or otherwise intangible truth or states. Symbolism in poetry has and still is used as an inspiration to write and sometimes can become the sole purpose of a poem. This poetic element is the foundation and core of Christina Rossetti’s poem Up-hill.

The symbolism itself is built over the course of the entire poem rather than just having it appear within two lines or so. Through each stanza one can easily recognize the symbolism appear between the two speakers: an inquiring traveler and the answering guide or leader who has already taken this road. Because of the prominent religious influence on many of Rossetti’s poems it is very likely the guide or leader in this poem is God himself encouraging the traveler’s progression on a “road” to heaven. The first stanza holds the first instance of an ongoing conversation between two speakers; a traveler asking various questions, and a guide answering them with a cautious yet reassuring tone. “Does the road wind uphill all the way? Yes, to the very end. Will the day’s journey take the whole long day? From morn to night, my friend.”(ll.1-4). In this initial stanza the traveler seems apprehensive toward the path to be taken. The road represents life; therefore it becomes obvious that destiny is the path the traveler finds him/herself debating. But the guide reply’s to both questions with a simple concise answer. His/ her answer gives a parallel to the “end” and “morn and night” suggests that the day (on the road) is the time spent on all the struggles and triumphs we experience in life, morn being our beginning and night representing our inevitable end. In the second stanza, the traveler specifically recognizes the night and questions whether or not it will be a relief or a defeat. The traveler expresses an uncertainty as to the...
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