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Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf,
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day
Nothing gold can stay.

Short Poem Analysis

"Nothing Gold Can Stay" by Robert Frost is a concise and evocative poem that explores the ephemeral nature of beauty and the fleeting quality of precious moments. Through its vivid imagery and contemplative tone, the poem reflects on the transient cycle of life and the inevitability of change.

The poem's title, "Nothing Gold Can Stay," immediately suggests the theme of impermanence. The word "gold" symbolizes something valuable and beautiful, while the phrase "can stay" implies that even the most precious things are subject to decay and transformation.

The poem uses the natural world as a metaphor for the fleeting nature of beauty. Frost describes the early stages of spring and compares the changing leaves to "flower," highlighting their brief and delicate existence.

The repeated phrase "Nature's first green is gold" emphasizes the initial burst of vibrant color that marks the beginning of spring. This phrase captures the idea that beauty is often most vibrant and pure at its inception.

As the poem progresses, Frost describes the process of change in nature and how the initial gold of spring leaves gives way to the "leaf subsides to leaf," suggesting a progression from youth to maturity and eventual decline.

The poem's final lines, "So Eden sank to grief, / So dawn goes down to day," convey the inevitability of change and the loss of pristine beauty. The reference to Eden alludes to the idea of paradise lost, underscoring the universal theme of impermanence and the loss of innocence.

"Nothing Gold Can Stay" prompts readers to reflect on the transitory nature of life's moments of beauty and innocence. Through its concise language and vivid imagery, the poem serves as a meditation on the fleeting quality of time and the inevitability of change. It captures the essence of the human experience, encouraging contemplation on the impermanence of all things and the value of cherishing the present moment.

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