"Those Winter Sundays”
“When the rooms were warm, he'd call,
and slowly I would rise and dress,
fearing the chronic angers of that house”(7-9).
(Dad considerate—waits till rooms warm
- Contrasts with chronic angers of line 9.
- Slowly rise – afraid )
Notemaking: (What do I see, notice, observe? What stands out?) Clearly the father is considerate, as he allows his family to stay in bed until the home reaches a comfortable temperature from the stoked fire. (why is this significant to note?)
Synthesis:: (What does this prove overall? To what can I connect this, either in the poem or elsewhere?) The contrast between the comfort and the father’s consideration with the chronic angers and the speaker’s fear are interesting. Even though the father cares, there is still a mood of hostility in the home. Readers appreciate that the father is above all loving and hardworking. This section of the poem shows the complexity of familial love—from the demands of everyday tasks a father must complete to the ones he does merely because he wants to (to show love in his own way). The economics seem to provide the bitter backdrop of the piece, in which the father must work very hard to make ends meet. Furthermore, the father’s disciplined nature comes across. Perhaps the speaker, who may have been a sensitive child, misinterprets his father’s “austerity” as lack of care, the “chronic angers” which perhaps were not really there. The speaker has realizes retrospectively that his father had many noble qualities which may have in fact frightened the boy.
Potential topic sentence: Hayden’s poem shows how subtle and mistakable a solid fatherly love can be.
You are certainly fair, God, if I may question you, though what I ask for is reasonable.
How come bad people’s actions flourish? While all
I attempt concludes in failure?
If you were my foe, O you my ally,
How, I question, might you crush
or hinder me more? Alas, the lushes and sluts
in their free time prosper more than I who invest,
Sir, all toward your will. Look, their rivers’ edges
How verdant and plush the branches! Decorated are they still with delicate fragrance, see, and breeze rustles
Them; sparrows nest—but I don’t; no, instead, I strife,
Time’s impotent, and do not father one creation that breathes.
My soul, O you master of all, replenish my faith.