ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Poem: Winged Sphinx by Margaret Fuller Analysis and Meaning

Updated on November 16, 2011


Margaret Fuller wrote many poems in her lifetime, but one that was especially famous was called Winged Sphinx. As I read through the poem a few times, I was unsure of what the underlying purpose, or message was that Fuller was attempting to get across. The first line of the poem, “Through brute nature upward rising”, immediately set a tone of savage, by using the word brute. But the next line, “Seed up-striving to the light” gave the audience a sense of hope and well being. The image of a seed planted, with the roots reaching out of the earth to reach the sunlight and survive. I immediately began to think of Margaret Fuller as one of the true Transcendentalists of the time period, with her connections to nature being stated within the first couple lines of her poem. She speaks about the seeds striving to light as a surprising revelation, as if life on earth is a miracle within itself, each plant that grows comes to her as an unrealized discovery every time. The first line ties in with her idea that nature and life is a miracle, she describes the surroundings of nature as brute, like challenges in life are difficult to overcome.

The entire poem is mostly about overcoming those “Dark but God-directed Ages”, the times when life is dealing you a bad deck of cards. She sees each life form as a “labored and learned divine soul”. Labored could mean the daily challenges, obstacles and work that you go through often and have to learn to deal with, or it could mean you’ve led an entire life full of let downs and difficult situations and there’s almost no fight left in you until you see that ray of sunlight, that hope that keeps you going. Fuller uses words of pureness when describing the “nature virgin mother queen”, if you “put forth an aspect chaste, serene” then, “assumes at last the destined wings”. I ultimately see this as if you follow what God and destiny have in store for you, and you do no wrong by the Virgin Mary by staying chaste and serene, then you will eventually fulfill your purpose on this earth, and you will earn your wings and become an angel.

She uses words like “riddle” and “intellectual” which makes me believe the audience for this poem is more for the “thinkers” of the time, the people who thought outside of the box and who made their own assumptions about the mysteries of life. She says, “Drawn from intellectual wells, Cold waters where truth never dwells” meaning you can’t always believe the accepted scientific, intellectual answer. Many scientific ideas and theories had been widely accepted, only to be refuted years later and replaced with a new theory. What you may always count on is nature, and the miracle of life that God creates. “Seek her in common daylights glow”, you may find the truth anywhere in nature, at any time. No theory needed. When it comes to life, not everything is black and white. In fact, most is green.


Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)