Peter W asked in Arts & HumanitiesPoetry · 8 years ago

What are the two main themes presented in the poem "To Hold a Poem" by A.J. M. Smith?

3 Answers

  • 8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    You have the name of the poem wrong.

    To Hold in a Poem

    I would take words

    As crisp and as white

    As our snow; as our birds

    Swift and sure in their flight;

    As clear and as cold

    As our ice; as strong as a jack pine;

    As young as a trillium; as old

    As the Rockies' irregular line;

    Sweet-smelling and bright

    As new rain; as hard

    And as smooth and as white

    As a brook pebble clean and unmarred;

    To hold in a poem of words,

    Like water in colourless glass,

    The spirit of mountains like birds,

    Of forests as pointed as grass,

    Snow drifting thin out of blue,

    Dark waters swirled into white.

    Dark cedar, dark fir, and the blue

    Cold night and the blue cold light.

    The lonely and austere

    Spirit of river and prairie,

    Lonely, untouchable, clear

    As the eagle's high, loneliest eyrie.

    A J M Smith is saying that to be truly Canadian a poem needs to be about all the things that people normally associate with Canada (snow, the Rockies, eagles, pine forests .....) and to be expressed in a typically Canadian language (a language which talks about snow, the Rockies, eagles ....).

    A J M Smith is saying that being Canadian is essentially being cliché.

    Maybe he is right.

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  • Anonymous
    8 years ago

    Go to


    for truly expert help on this poem.

    Good luck.

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  • 8 years ago


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