Video presentation of the poem


video of the poem Sunrise on the Hills by H W Longfellow and about the author


Presentation video created by Ms.Sajeena Shukkoor


Biography of H W Longfellow



A reading of the poem “SUNRISE ON THE HILLS” by H W Longfellow makes one feel like drawing parallels from the Romantic poetry which is rich with mellifluousness and sensuousness. This is a poem of nature; senses. The poem bears testimony to Longfellow’s Romantic fervour and mysticism

The poem starts with the grand glorious return of the Sun after a period of absence (night). The poet sings of the nature’s delightfulness in receiving the first rays of the sun. This can be felt in every element and activity of nature, – the woods, gales, vales, clouds, landscapes, etc.

The lifting of the clouds unveils the beauty of nature. The day hasn’t passed its maidenhood. She (the Nature) is still young and fresh with her “mellow blush”. The whole poem is resonant with sounds untellingly telling about the progressing daytime.

As for figures of speech, there is the use of Simile in the first stanza, where one sees shattered, fading clouds compared to “hosts in battle overthrown.” The sky over the hilltops is in red glow as it is dawn. The ‘red’ can be of a battlefield in post-war time. It is indicative of the ‘blood shed’ in a battlefield.

There is consonance coming in ‘mist thrust’ and alliteration coming with ‘blasted, bare’. Onomatopoeia is another major device used in the poem. Sensuousness surfaces in with the onomatopoeic words. The first stanza is full of images pertaining to sight (visual imagery). ”Sense of sight” is pacified to the maximum here.

There is a transition from ‘sight’ to ‘hearing’ in the second stanza. Auditory imageries are used here profusely. One hears listens here. Every near and distant sound leaves us in a mesmerising soon. The dash, flash, the ringing of ‘the village bell’, wild horn’s hooting echoed in the hilly countenance, the merry shout of the valley – all is to our ears proving ‘poetry is to ears, not to eyes’. Nature’s bounty is, so heavy that one can feel the lightness of his soul. Even the breaking sound of the thin smoke by distant answering does not escape our ears.

The ‘merry shout’ is oxymoron giving the picture of a happy child shouting at the top of his voice in an elevated state of mind. The poet has brought out the pure, perfect innocence and enthusiasm of a child throughout the poem.

Kinaesthetic imagery is employed to impart the sense of movement. This ensures dynamism, in whatever seen and heard. Every speck is teeming with life and it is felt for sure. The bittern’s flights in spiral way, the water’s current whirl are instances of the active energy in nature.

Rhyme comes in the poem in pairs and the rhyme scheme is thus aa, bb, and so on in the poem.

Seemingly simple a poem, it comes down to concentrate on a philosophy of life in the last six lines. Considering all the facets of ‘Sunrise on the Hills’, this is something which drags us into the serenity of nature. Longfellow introduces the ultimate doctor, the perfect soothing agent to mankind – the nature. If you are worn out or feel hard with difficult surroundings, nature is a lesson to keep you out of a fainting heart and a sleepy soul.

The poem proclaims the power of nature. You ‘lose’ and ‘gain’ yourself simultaneously in nature – you can’t get out of smiling face when you constantly see sweet, cherishing face of Nature.

Prepared by

Smitha k, ghss Kattoor,


Uma Narayanan, cnnhss Cherpu



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  1. sir,
    could you please clarify this doubt? The question is..

    if you visit Namuana village to see turtle calling, your schooner ………(anchor) in a beautiful bay.

    It is a question of conditional clause. what is its answer?

    Will anchor or anchored or anchors ????

    kindly give an answer please.

      • ok Sir, Thank you..But the options are..Will anchor , anchored and anchors
        (I think it is will anchor as it belongs to first conditional clause.right?)

      • Read it- Conditional Implication sentences
        A conditional sentence expressing an implication (also called a factual conditional sentence) essentially states that if one fact holds, then so does another. (If the sentence is not a declarative sentence, then the consequence may be expressed as an order or a question rather than a statement.) The facts are usually stated in whatever grammatical tense is appropriate to them; there are not normally special tense or mood patterns for this type of conditional sentence. Such sentences may be used to express a certainty, a universal statement, a law of science, etc. (in these cases if may often be replaced by when):

        If you heat water to 100 degrees, it boils.
        If the sea is stormy, the waves are high.

        In normal case see the following examples
        IF Clause
        Type If – clause Main cluse
        1 If you study well, you will pass (shall/will/may/can+V1)
        2 If you studied well you would pass(should/would/could/might+V1)
        3 If you had studied well you would have passed(should/would/could/might+have+V3)
        There are some other types like “If I were a bird, I would have +V3”, etc
        Now decide the answer, it may be “anchors” or(can we give mark to “will anchor” as we teach it is the verb form of main clause in firs type of if -sentences?
        Read this article

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