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God’s Grandeur

God’s Grandeur

by Gerard Manley Hopkins

God’s Grandeur Questions

Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.

  1. What words might Hopkins make up, if he saw the world today?
  2. Does this poem have any funny moments? If so, where do you see the humor? Don’t be afraid to laugh if you find something funny. What we laugh at tells us lots about who we are, if we examine it. If nothing seems funny, how does its humorlessness add or take away from your appreciation of the poem?
  3. Is the poem pessimistic, optimistic, realistic, or some combination of all three. Explain your view.
  4. What would a film or cartoon version of the poem look like? What about a sci-fi movie, or a western, or a horror flick?
  5. The Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry (2003) says that, "In Hopkins’ poetry, pain is the principal ingredient in joy." Do you think this statement is true of "God’s Grandeur"? If so, where do you see "pain" and "joy" mixed? If not, how are "pain" and "joy" kept separate. Or maybe you don’t see "pain" or "joy" in this poem. Why?

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