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Oklahoma Agriculture in the Classroom

Songs and Poems

Prairie Spring

by Willa Cather

Evening and the flat land,
Rich and sombre and always silent;
The miles of fresh-plowed soil,
Heavy and black, full of strength and harshness;
The growing wheat, the growing weeds,
The toiling horses, the tired men;
The long empty roads,
Sullen fires of sunset, fading,
The eternal, unresponsive sky.
Against all this, Youth,
Flaming like the wild roses,
Singing like the larks over the plowed fields,
Flashing like a star out of the twilight;
Youth with its insupportable sweetness,
Its fierce necessity,
Its sharp desire,
Singing and singing,
Out of the lips of silence,
Out of the earthy dusk.

Discussion and Activities
  1. Review "How to Read a Poem."
  2. Students divide into pairs to take turns reading the poem aloud to each other.
  3. Who is speaking in the poem?
  4. Describe what is happening in your own words.
  5. What kind(s) of imagery are used in this poem?
    • simile
    • metaphor
    • hyperbole
    • personification
  6. How does the use of imagery affect your understanding of the poem?
  7. Draw a picture to illustrate this poem.