Pied Beauty Essay

How Gerard Manley Hopkins vividly portrays the beauty of pied things? The poem ‘Pied Beauty’ by Gerard Manley Hopkins uses an array of ways to show vivid beauty in this small text. He uses ways such as intense imagery, sound effects such as the rhythm and alliteration. The word pied just means 2 different shades of colours, meaning that the title just means the 2 different shades of beauty. Beauty can be both seen as internal and external. This poem shows that everything is made by god so praise him.

Also in this poem the first line has a word which says “things”, when we humans say things we are including everything excluding us. He believed that everything created by nature and nature itself is the most beautiful thing, because God created it, and therefore he calls everything, even something we would consider as odd or ugly, beautiful. What is interesting, that Gerard Manley Hopkins was religious; he was a Roman Catholic priest. Maybe it was his experience that brought him to the idea of beautiful pied things created by God. One of the ways the author shows the beauty of pied things is by using intense amounts of imagery.

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This is evident in lines “For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow”, “For rose-moles all in stipple upon the trot that swim” and “Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls”. The first quote, “For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow” shows that how the sky with its imperfect, odd patterns is beautiful. How brinded cows have different coloration pattern which is imperfect, they might look ugly but they are beautiful. These things might not actually look beautiful to us but according to Hopkins he believes that whatever is a creation of god must be beautiful.

Things might look ugly on the exterior but their soul is pure this is why the poem’s name is “Pied Beauty” as it is unclear. The author also finds beauty in things such as “Fresh-Firecoal chestnuts-falls”. If we are to look at glowing firecoal we see very bright yellow centre which resembles the Chestnut after they are heated and peeled from their black shell. The author compares 2 different things but says that they both are the same in terms of beauty. Along the poem, the author is explaining the beauty of dappled things that has God created and in many parts it becomes a metaphor for the various types of things.

He incorporates everything beautiful in something ugly, for example when the brinded cow is being seen as clouds in the sky or when rose moles are shown on trout. One other way that the author shows the beauty of pied things is by using sound effect; to be precise, alliteration. This is evident in line “couple-colour”, “Fresh-firecoal” and “swift, slow, sweet, sour”. The first quote makes pronouncing the words more difficult, but adds more emphasis on the line. The repetition has an impact on the rhythm, it accelerates the whole pronunciation of the line.

The second quote, “Fresh-firecoal” this alliteration makes a natural pause which also makes pronouncing the word difficult. The third “swift, slow, sweet, sour” these words are alliteration and every 2 words are opposites for example “Swift, Slow”. These opposites show that both good and bad things are beautiful as they’re made from god. Pied things might look unpleasant but they’re beautiful, pied things are beautiful. After the word “dappled” most of the poem is giving examples of how dappled things are beautiful.

In conclusion Hopkins uses many techniques to portray beauty on pied things such as vivid imagery, sound effects and much more. One of the strongest ways Hopkins shows beauty is with his intense show of imagery. The way he shows the imagery makes every animal seem very magnificent and beautiful. He incorporates everything beautiful in something ugly, for example when the brinded cow is being seen as clouds in the sky. Also Hopkins has intense colours being shown in the text which gives the beauty an uniqueness and a clear picture of how beautiful it actually is.


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