Summary Of Robert Hayden's Poetry
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1. The speaker experiences feeling of regret, shame, self-reproach, and guilt after realizing how hard his/her father works and never gets thanked or noticed for it. He only realized this after he grew up, “What did I know, what did I know/of love’s austere and lonely offices?”(13-14). He repeats what did I know to emphasize that he now knows so much more about his father and his father’s love than he did as a child. The word austere can mean harsh and serve which is can stand for the father’s love, he went through harsh and serve measures for his family. The phrase “chronic angers of that house” can imply that there was fear of other difficulties they were facing in the house.
2. The subject of Hayden’s poem is his father and theme is parental