Robert Frost Questions and Answers

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Examine the emotional response from "Nothing Gold Can Stay."

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The original question was edited.  I think that the strongest  emotional response to the poem exists in how there is a permanent sense of change in consciousness.  There is a clear demonstration of how being in the world is subject to change.  While one might wish for permanence and a sense of lasting in the world, the poem triggers the experience of temporality within the reader.  An emotional approach to this might depend on the reader, themselves.  In typical Frost fashion, optimists will point to how change is a part of being and representative of the greatness in life.  That which is bad will change and the continual evolution in being is what makes life worth living.  An equally valid emotional experience can emerge from the pessimist who can see the poem as a clarion call to reflect that nothing good will stay and that life is rooted only in that which passes.  Each emotional experience is a valid one.  I think that the poem speaks to both experiences in the images employed.  These images such as the dawn's movement through day, the mutability of nature, and the sinking from the Garden of Eden are all reflective of this.  There is an emotional response of reflection or rumination, in which the individual's true nature or their own emotional construction is evident.

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