Fall, Leaves, Fall

Fall, Leaves, Fall

by Emily Bronte

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day;
Every leaf speaks bliss to me
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
I shall smile when wreaths of snow
Blossom where the rose should grow;
I shall sing when night’s decay
Ushers in a drearier day.

Summary of Fall, Leaves, Fall

  • Popularity of “Fall, Leaves, Fall”: This short and crispy poem “Fall, Leaves, Fall” by Emily Bronte first appeared in a book, A Book of Women’s Verse, in 1921. Clarendon Press published it. The poem beautifully presents the thoughts of the poet about autumn and its impacts on the leaves and flowers. The beauty of the poem lies in the poet’s resolve to welcome whatever nature brings for her.
  • “Fall, Leaves, Fall” As a Representative of Reality: The speaker of the poem addresses the fall of the leaves, adding flowers also die away in this season. The nights become longer, and the days become shorter. And every leaf tells her about the bliss of nature as it flutters on the autumn tree. However, the speaker states that she would still be happy even if there is a wreath of snow instead of a wreath of roses. She would still be singing in the praise of nature when the destruction of the night transforms into a dreary day. She, in fact, wants to express her thoughts of welcoming nature come what may.
  • Major Themes in “Fall, Leaves, Fall”: Autumn seasons, the change of situation, and the poet’s attitude of welcome are three major thematic strands of the poem. The poet address the leaves, asking them to fall down and die away. However, she also sees this change with a resigned attitude that she must as it is to happen in any way. Therefore, she takes the cue from the fluttering leave to take it a bliss of God as the night’s decay is to usher into a dull day and she still sings of it. Therefore, this attitude of welcome becomes her trademark come what may.

Analysis of Literary Devices Used in Fall, Leaves, Fall

Emily Bronte used various literary devices to enhance the intended impact of her poem. Some of the major literary devices analyzed in this poem are as follows.

  1. Assonance: Assonance is the repetition of vowel sounds in the same line, such as the sound of /a/ in “Fall, leaves fall; die flowers away” and the sound of /o/ in “Blossom where the rose should grow.”
  2. Alliteration: Alliteration is the repetition of consonant sounds in the same line in quick succession, such as the sound of /f/ in “fluttering from.”
  3. Consonance: Consonance is the repetition of consonant sounds in the same line, such as the sound of /f / in “Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;” and the sound of /s/ in “Every leaf speaks bliss to me.”
  4. Enjambment: It is defined as a thought in verse that does not come to an end at a line break; rather, it rolls over to the next line. For example;

I shall sing when night’s decay
Ushers in a drearier day.

  1. Imagery: Imagery is used to make readers perceive things involving their five senses. Emily Bronte has used imagery in this poem, such as “Every leaf speaks bliss to me”, “Blossom where the rose should grow” and “Ushers in a drearier day.”
  2. Metaphor: It is a figure of speech in which an implied comparison is made between objects that are different in nature. The poet uses the implicit metaphor of autumn to show her despondence.
  3. Symbolism: Symbolism is using symbols to signify ideas and qualities, giving them symbolic meanings that are different from the literal meanings. The poem shows symbols like a tree, rose, and leaves to show her own state of mind.

Analysis of Poetic Devices Used in Fall, Leaves, Fall

Poetic and literary devices are the same, but a few are used only in poetry. Here is an analysis of some of the poetic devices used in this poem.

  1. Heroic couplet: It shows the use of two verses rhyming with each other. This poem shows the use of a heroic couplet as the first two verses rhyme with away and day, and the same goes on until the end.
  2. End Rhyme: End rhyme is used to make the stanza melodious. Emily Bronte used end rhyme in this poem such as “away/day”, “me/tree” and “snow/grow.”
  3. Rhyme Scheme: The poem follows the AABBCCDD rhyme scheme, and this pattern continues until the end.
  4. Stanza: A stanza is a poetic form of some lines. This poem is a single stanza with eight verses.

Quotes to be Used

The following lines are useful to quote when talking about the bad times in life.

I shall sing when night’s decay
Ushers in a drearier day.