Because wings are associated with birds and angels, they symbolize the heavens. In this poem, in particular, wings are a symbol of spiritual heights. The speaker wants to become a feather on God’s wing. This means that his faith in God will carry him to redemption.
The lark has multiple meanings. It is a herald of dawn, and by extension, rebirth. It is a bird known for its musical song, so it is a symbol of the poet. Also, bird wings bring to mind the flight of angels, thereby symbolizing Christ’s ascension.
Wealth and poverty (symbols)
In the poem “wealth and store” do not simply describe money and goods but are symbols for spiritual richness. Similarly, Being “poore” and “thinne” refer both to financial and physical states but also the spiritual consequences of sin.
Growth and decay (motif)
Both the content and form of the poem play off the motif of a cycle of growth and decay. The poem starts with “wealth” and becomes “poore,” reflected in the shorter lines. It reaches the lowest depths and then rises up. Besides describing humanity’s spiritual state moving from death to resurrection, this cycle of growth and decay also suggests the movement of the seasons from cold to warm and back. As an Easter poem, the poem draws attention to the position of the holiday in the cycle of the seasons. Spring falls in between winter, with its short days, and summer, with its long days.
The life of mankind (allegory)
In this poem, the story of an individual life (from birth to sin to redemption) is an allegory both for the spiritual life of mankind (from Paradise to the Fall to redemption), and for the life, death, and Resurrection of Christ.
Easter Wings Questions and Answers
The Question and Answer section for Easter Wings is a great
resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.