In his poem "The Village Blacksmith," Longfellow celebrates the simple, hard-working life of the eponymous blacksmith. In the first stanza, Longfellow describes the blacksmith as a powerful, "mighty man," with "large and sinewy hands." In the second stanza, Longfellow writes that the blacksmith's brow is "wet with honest sweat." In this set of images, the poet celebrates the honor of hard work. In the same stanza, we are told that the blacksmith can stand tall and proud because "he owes not any man." In other words, the blacksmith can be proud because he has earned everything for himself. He has not borrowed or profited from the hard work of others; through his own honest efforts, he is self-sufficient.
In the third stanza, the poet emphasizes how hard the blacksmith works by writing that he works "Week in, week out, from morn till night," and in the fourth stanza we are told that the children in the village are full of admiration for the blacksmith because of how hard he works. The poet here is indicating that the blacksmith is a model whom others follow.
In the fifth stanza, the blacksmith's honest, working life is associated with the virtue of religion. The blacksmith goes to church every Sunday, implying that he is a religious man. There is a connection made here between the blacksmith's integrity and the values of the church.
At the end of the poem, the speaker in the poem directly addresses the blacksmith, saying "Thanks, thanks to thee, my worthy friend." The blacksmith in this poem clearly represents the poet's ideal version of what a good man should be. The speaker further says that the blacksmith should serve as an example to everyone and that it is with such people as the blacksmith that "Our fortunes must be wrought." In other words, if a society is to flourish, it must be made up of honest and hardworking people like the blacksmith.