The Red Wheelbarrow Poem by William Carlos Williams

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The Red Wheelbarrow Poem

“The Red Wheelbarrow” is a poem by William Carlos Williams that was first published in 1923. The poem consists of a single sentence describing a red wheelbarrow, wet with rain, sitting beside some chickens. The poem is an example of Imagist poetry, which focuses on conveying a precise depiction of an image. The central theme of the poem is simplicity, and the poem reveals the beauty in the commonplace without falling back on ornamental language. The poem also engages with themes that include sentimentality, nostalgia, nature, and the modern relationship between man and nature. The poem is built upon simplicity as a means to convey its imagery, and it is a formal exercise in simplicity, in that it is trying to show the wheelbarrow exactly as it appears. The poem is a metaphor for the value of everyday objects and the importance of paying attention to the beauty in the commonplace.

The Red Wheelbarrow Poem by William Carlos Williams
The Red Wheelbarrow Poem by William Carlos Williams

The Red Wheelbarrow

so much depends
upon

a red wheel
barrow

glazed with rain
water

beside the white
chickens.

This poem, composed of only 16 words, is known for its simplicity and vivid imagery. Despite its brevity, it has sparked much discussion and interpretation among literary scholars and readers. The poem captures a moment in everyday life, emphasizing the importance of ordinary objects and the impact they can have on our perception and experience.

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