Windhover By Hopkins In Gerard Manley Hopkins’ poem “The Windhover” there is a sort of representational allusion to Christ and Jesus. In other words the speaker praises the Lord by praising what he takes as a symbol for Christ, the windhover himself. Through out the poem the speaker symbolizes Christ’s glory by the way the falcon reacts to the air how it maneuvers and even charcteristic traits of the falcon species. One could only appreciate the glory of the Lord more after interpreting the poem. The poem is subtitled “To Christ our Lord” because the falcon reminds him of Christ.
The speaker continuously hails one of God’s most stunning creatures, the falcon. He is flabbergasted at the magnificence of the windhover’s flight. He wonders at its colorful feathers and the sheer speed of its flight. His tone suggests that he is in awe..he is observing something equivalent second coming of Jesus or angels walking among regular men. He throws out a barrage visual imagery to try to describe the windhover and still does not seem to come close to its real magnificence.
He wonders how such a creature could exist but is eventually just filled with glee in knowing the fact that it does exist. In the first stanza the speaker states that he spotted the morning’s minion as if to suggest that the falcon was some how subservient to the morning. He suggests that there is some sort of royal heiarchy by using words that recall images of sovereignty. Once the reader scratches the surface of the first stanza he can begin to understand the remainder of the poem. The second stanza takes a different stance on things. The windhover is out maneuvering when a smoothly and suddenly dives.
The speakers is scared for the birds’ safety but is pleasantly surprised when the bird is lifted by a huge wind. One can say that in times of foolish pleasure he can fall but Christ will always lift be there to lift him back up. Christ is thus the cushion needed for even a temporary fall from grace. Stanza three uses a barrage of descriptive words to denote the dignity of such a creature. In the animal kingdom it would be considered king of the roost. The speaker call the windhover a chevalier meaning knight or in other words a savior.
Christ is also considered a savior. The speaker compares the bird and Christ with the hard work of the plow that creates a furrow and displays the wet soil underneath and burned embers that shine red-gold when split open and burn with fire. That is directly comparable to assumption that the speaker was leading a dark life until the Lord stirred up his life, split open his dark shell and helped him to shine with a new vigor for life. Christ could be seen in nature in the windhover’s existence. He is symbolized in all the actions of the falcon and also represented in its charactaeristics.
The speaker praises the Lord by his amazed praise and represented in its characteristics. The speaker praises the Lord by his amazed praise and appreciation. What he seems to be saying is that Christ exists in even the smaller details in life and all we have to do is observe them periodically to know that Christ lives on.