Basically, the speaker felt sad about the girl who died while at the same time, admired her energy and tenacity. He basically mourned the tragic and wasteful death of the little girl because in reality, one of the saddest things to do is to bury a child. It can be then assumed that the speaker is attending a funeral, specifically the funeral of John Whiteside’s daughter. The speaker allowed me to get a deeper perspective about death itself and this feeling was magnified because the person who died was a no less than a child.
2. The characteristics of the girl that made the speaker astonished at her brown study were her seemingly undying energy in her fragile little body. He thought that it was ironic that a young child, who is full of potential and tenacity, has a gentle little body. 3. The geese cried “alas” because the little girl, who was playing nearby, chased them and forced them to fly away just like any child would upon seeing tame animals.
Moreover, given the context of the poem, it can also be said that the geese cried because the girl, who was once enthusiastically chasing them, is now dead. In other words, the geese’s cries may also imply their shock or bewilderment at the little girl’s death. 4. Based on the lines of the last stanza, such as “now go the bells” (Ransom) and “in one house we are sternly stopped” (Ransom), it is clear that the speaker was looking at the coffin of a young girl who was once full of life but is now dead.
The word “vexed” (Ransom) in the last line of the poem can be associated with grief or anger at the death of the girl for it is always sad to see a child die and his or her dreams shattered. Thus, it can be said that the speaker was angry or displeased by the sight of the dead child.
Works Cited Ransom, John Crowe. “Bells for John Whiteside’s Daughter. ” 1969. Selected Poems. Poetry Foundation. org. 19 December 2008 < http://www. poetryfoundation. org/archive/poem. html? id=179119>.