What are the literary devices in the poem "A Brook in the City" by Robert Frost?I'm mostly looking for personification  

1 Answer | Add Yours

lentzk's profile pic

Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Personification occurs when the author or poet gives a non-human object human qualities, traits, or sensibilities.   Frost begins his poem "A Brook in the City" with personification as he describes the farmhouse's feelings:

The farmhouse lingers, though averse to square
With the new city street it has to wear
A number in" (1-3).

Frost personifies the farmhouse by describing its action as "lingering," because the farmhouse is "averse" to the encroaching city.  Frost gives the farmhouse in this stanza human emotions, as if the farmhouse does not like being a part of the "new city street." 

Frost also personifies the brook, by making it sound as though the city has imprisoned it, like a criminal:

"The brook was thrown
Deep in a sewer dungeon under stone
In fetid darkness still to live and run" (16-18).

By characterizing the brook's redirection under the streets of the city as an unjust imprisonment, Frost uses the personification of the brook to stir sympathy from the reader toward this aspect of nature that has been forced to disappear due to urbanization. 

Sources:

We’ve answered 318,976 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question