Nothing Gold Can Stay Poem Summary and Line by Line Analysis by Robert Frost in English


American poet Robert Frost penned “Nothing Gold Can Stay” in 1923. It was released in the same year’s New Hampshire collection, which went on to win the 1924 Pulitzer Prize. Robert Frost’s poem “Nothing Gold Can Stay” explores the transience of life. It discusses how time affects nature in order to convey the perishable quality of the beauty of life.

About The Poet

Poet Robert Lee Frost was American. Before being published in the United States, his work was first made available in England. He was born in San Francisco, California, on March 26, 1874. 29 January 1963 was the date of his death in Boston, Massachusetts.

Theme Of The Poem

The poem “Nothing Gold Can Stay” is about how everything in life, including youth, charm, and life itself, is ephemeral. Nothing “gold,” or more specifically nothing that is absolutely flawless, priceless, or lovely, can survive eternally.

Lines 1-2

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.

The phrase “Nature’s first green” references to spring. The first green buds that emerge after a long winter are said to be as precious as gold, according to the poet. The seasons will undoubtedly go on, therefore its beauty will pass quickly. Spring’s gentle beauty quickly gives way to summer. As described in the first line, the “hue” is “green” spring. The second line justifies how the springtime greenness will eventually fade.

Lines 3-5

Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.

The early leaves are as lovely as flowers, according to the author. In other words, spring is as beautiful as a flower in itself. It may seem that this beauty only lasts for an hour because it is so ephemeral and short-lived. The writer is also discussing how the early spring blossoms are replaced when leaf subsides to leaf.

Lines 6-8

So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

Both the ideal state of nature and beauty in general are represented by the metaphor of Eden. Both of these concepts are transient and will eventually go away. Beauty ought be substituted by something else, just as the stunning and unique dawn must always give room to the sunlight. Frost is stating that the sunrise too is merely a fleeting moment. The poet reiterates that “Gold” is a symbol for all things significant and valuable in the concluding line . He is arguing that gold has its limitations. He thinks that everything in nature possesses this quality. Nothing is constant, including trees, streams, oceans, mountains, the sun, and stars. Everything varies.