Unlike the traditional form of closed poetry, Robert Bly utilizes a subtle approach to depict his words. He avoids the use of rhyme and rhythm, taking a visually direct approach to convey the meaning. The elements of form which influenced my perception of this poem include cadence, free verse, descriptive language, and depiction of the setting.
I believe the tone taken to describe the deserted snow-covered streets communicates the beauty of a silent winter night. I also see how much he really enjoys the calmness of late-night winter drive. Bly writes, “There is a privacy I love in this snowy night./ Driving around, I will waste more time.” (line 4-5). Bly’s descriptive language illustrates the poems meaning, while my perception of the setting conveys the emotion.
Every line from the description of the cold streets, to the physical characteristics of winter, refers directly to the context of the poem. “The only things moving are swirls of snow.” (Bly 1). “As I lift the mailbox door, I feel its cold iron.” (Bly 3). These lines help me identify the conditions of environment and my relation to the effects of winter. The correlation between my own winter experiences and Bly’s depiction of the setting, directly influence my perception of the poem’s meaning.