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Sunday Morning: The Meaningless Sacrifice Essay

1455 words - 6 pages

Born October 2, 1879, Wallace Stevens came from a little town called Reading, Pennsylvania. A special student at Harvard University in 1987, Stevens took a liking in verse-writing and submitted a couple of his works in the Harvard Advocate. Stevens became a lawyer for many different firm while living in New York after graduating from New York Law in 1903 and passing the bar the following year. In the same year he passed the bar exam he met Elsie Kachel- his future wife. Married in 1909, Elsie Kachel gave birth to a daughter named Holly Bright in 1924. Before moving to Hartford in, Connecticut in 1916, he was the vice-president of the New York Office of the Equitable Security Co. of St. Louis. Once he settled into his Hartford home, he began to grow in his career as a lawyer and as a writer. In 1915 Stevens publish the original version of “Sunday Morning but made changes to the Harmonium version of it. After receiving discouraging words from critics Stevens stopped writing in the 1920’s and focused on growing in his business career for that reason he added only eight new poems to the Second edition of Harmonium in 1931. In 1934 he was names vice president of an office in Hartford. From that time to 1940 he was welcomed as a member of the exclusive center around the artistic and literary deities Barbra and Henry Church. He focused on his writing till his death in 1955
In the poem “Sunday Morning” Stevens introduces a woman in her night gown eating a late breakfast. While people attend church at this time she evaluates the purpose she may have in offering her life to Christianity. After spending quite some time reflecting on the subject she pauses and is skeptical towards the belief in Jesus’s incarnation. The woman brings up the thought of paradise, meaning Heaven from a Christians point of view, and believes paradise is found on earth through animals and nature. Stevens narrated the poem and expresses himself and argues that it is meaningless to put your life in religion while finding beauty and “divinity” through nature.
In “Sunday Morning” Stevens argues the idea that spirituality exists in nature which clashes with conventional ideals of Christianity and paradise. He includes a divine concept and an affirmation style of writing which speaks of the ability to find “divinity” everywhere while simultaneously seeking to expose the true nature of organized religion. Miller suggest that ““Sunday Morning” is Stevens’ most eloquent description of the moment when the gods dissolve” (Miller). Responding to his suggestion, the woman’s disbelief in a supreme being confirms her agonistic point of views. Stevens uses his poetry to express and convey his religious ideas. Continuing, Steven’s agnostic background reveals his argument on finding beauty in nature: “The poem proceeds by contrasting the surfaces and the depth of things: the surfaces of nature- its false flicks and forms, its rhetoric- contrast with its depth, which turn out to be internal to the...

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