Prepared Reading: Fire and Ice

I actually had a very difficult time choosing the poem I would read in class. I eventually got so frustrated that I just began looking up poets that I knew I loved. I began looking over William Blake poems, then found myself at Robert Frost. I always loved his poem Fire and Ice. I found it very appealing because Frost draws parallels between the fiery nature of desire as well as the chilling nature of hate. It also makes me think of a certain phrase from a book I read my senior year in high school on the Rwandan genocide. The book quoted John Milton’s Paradise Lost, “so here the Arch-Angel paused, betwixt the world destroyed and world restored”. I suppose I am drawn to poems that deal with destruction and the end of the world?

While reading the poem, I feel I did a good job of using dramatic pauses as well as voice fluctuation. I had most of the poem memorizing, being that it was so short, but I wish I had not had to look at my piece of paper because I feel this took away from my performance. I also wish my hands weren’t shaking so much! I was very happy that I was able to share with the class the supposed origins or inspirations of Fire and Ice. As I said in class, I believe that Frost was inspired more so by Dante’s Inferno rather than an astronomer. Again, I like to side with texts that have themes of destruction and suffering.

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One thought on “Prepared Reading: Fire and Ice

  1. Your delivery gave a real sense of weight to the short poem. You were energetic from the start, then faded a little toward the end (perhaps because of the irregular line/rhyme scheme). The anecdote about the astronomer was a nice touch–and your personal preference for the ‘infernal’ inspiration strikes me as very appropos, “favoring fire.”

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