Study Guide

Those Winter Sundays Youth

By Robert Hayden

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Remember the good old days when you were young? When someone lit the fires in your home so you didn’t have to? When someone polished your shoes? When someone paid the bills and cared for you? The speaker in “Those Winter Sundays” is remembering those good old days, though they didn’t seem so good at the time. But that's only because he was young and ignorant. Once he's grown up a bit, and has a few years behind him, he's able to recognize his father's love.

Questions About Youth

  1. What is the relationship between age and knowledge in the poem?
  2. What is the relationship between age and love in the poem?
  3. Does the poem suggest that all kids are blind to their parents’ experiences? Or just that the speaker of the poem is?
  4. How old do you think the speaker is now? How can you tell?

Chew on This

“Those Winter Sundays” suggests that no children can comprehend their parents’ love for them. They're too busy being resentful.

“Those Winter Sundays” suggests that becoming an adult means understanding your parents’ motivations and experiences.

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