Study Guide

Slow, Slow, Fresh Fount Art and Culture

By Ben Jonson

Art and Culture

Ā "Slow, Slow, Fresh Fount" is a song from a play, a song that reflects on the act of singing as a way to channel grief. At times the poem even implies that art or singing can actually help somebody who is grieving. But at other moments the poem makes us think that singing about our sadness only serves to prolong it and keep us miserable. But hey, who doesn't love a good wallow every now and then?

Questions About Art and Culture

  1. Do you think singing this song is helping or hurting Echo's efforts to get over the death of her crush? In other words, is she sadder or happier, having sung it?
  2. What do you think the line "our beauties are not ours" even means? Does this line have anything to do with art, or the beautiful things (like songs) that we create?
  3. Does this poem suggest that nature makes art, or that we impose art onto nature?

Chew on This

The rhyme between "sings" and "springs" tells us that art has the power to help us cope with grief and see new life after death.

The poem's repeated references to grief suggest that, sometimes, art (like a song) only reinforces or prolongs our grief.