Richard Wilbur

(March 1, 1921)

Boy At The Window - Poem by Richard Wilbur

Seeing the snowman standing all alone
In dusk and cold is more than he can bear.
The small boy weeps to hear the wind prepare
A night of gnashings and enormous moan.
His tearful sight can hardly reach to where
The pale-faced figure with bitumen eyes
Returns him such a God-forsaken stare
As outcast Adam gave to paradise.

The man of snow is, nonetheless, content,
Having no wish to go inside and die.
Still, he is moved to see the youngster cry.
Though frozen water is his element,
He melts enough to drop from one soft eye
A trickle of the purest rain, a tear
For the child at the bright pane surrounded by
Such warmth, such light, such love, and so much fear.


Comments about Boy At The Window by Richard Wilbur

  • (4/10/2018 1:35:00 PM)


    1,2,3,4 we dont want guns no more! (Report) Reply

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  • (4/10/2018 1:35:00 PM)


    Connor you've just started a war (Report) Reply

  • (4/10/2018 1:26:00 PM)


    I rilly loved this pome. (Report) Reply

  • (4/10/2018 1:26:00 PM)


    Donald Trump! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! (Report) Reply

  • (4/9/2018 1:40:00 PM)


    This is the bestest pome I ever readed. (Report) Reply

  • (4/3/2018 12:43:00 PM)


    Barack Obama! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (7/8/2017 4:40:00 PM)


    This poem has levels... oh, my, this poem is not all surface sugar icing and bathos...- - - - ]
    For the child at the bright pane surrounded by
    Such warmth, such light, such love, and so much fear.
    (Report) Reply

  • Anil Kumar Panda (7/8/2017 12:20:00 PM)


    A beautiful poem on the warmth and love the child holds for the snowman and in return gets the compassion. A poem to read again and again. Thanks for sharing. (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (7/8/2017 8:29:00 AM)


    I read this poem longtime back. Its pleasure to read it again. Displays such warmth and compassion to wrap around my heart. (Report) Reply

  • Glen Kappy (7/8/2017 8:07:00 AM)


    I don't know Wilbur's work as a whole, but this poem is charming. -GK (Report) Reply

  • (7/8/2017 4:39:00 AM)


    The small boy and its feelings beautifully given in this poem. (Report) Reply

  • Edward Kofi Louis (7/8/2017 4:04:00 AM)


    The small boy weeps! ! Thanks for sharing this poem with us. (Report) Reply

  • Bernard F. Asuncion (7/8/2017 1:27:00 AM)


    Such a heartwarming poem perfectly expressed here.... Thanks for posting👍 (Report) Reply

  • Brian Johnston (7/8/2017 12:42:00 AM)


    This is one of my favorite Richard Wilbur poems. He truly is a genius and to my lights at least the equal of Robert Frost who I also love. In the late 1960's I actually heard him do a reading of his work at the University of Oklahoma while I was a graduate student in Physics. I have never forgotten that evening! (Report) Reply

  • (4/9/2014 4:43:00 AM)


    Nature is wonderfully interwoven with the living organisms and make them pleasure through its beauty, kindness and all good things it have got from the grace of the unknown and it is always gracious itself to part with the living organisms in which a major part is shared by the human being. The tears in the poem narrated felt its very feeling of love and poet have done well in its creation with beautiful words. (Report) Reply

  • (4/9/2014 4:43:00 AM)


    Nature is wonderfully interwoven with the living organisms and make them pleasure through its beauty, kindness and all good things it have got from the grace of the unknown and it is always gracious itself to part with the living organisms in which a major part is shared by the human being. The tears in the poem narrated felt its very feeling of love and poet have done well in its creation with beautiful words. (Report) Reply

  • Thomas Vaughan Jones (3/23/2014 2:54:00 PM)


    Richard, a little attention to the rhythm and rhyme scheme, drop two lines from the last verse and you would have the basis for a beautiful sonnet. The poem, as is, is full of heart. (Report) Reply

    (11/25/2017 8:57:00 PM)

    Mr. Jones has embarrassed himself beyond measure-the only thing that could have saved this advice was framing it as a joke. Unfortunately, his suggestion to Richard appears to be very much in earnest.

    (11/20/2016 9:24:00 PM)

    I find it comical when nobodies on PH insinuate that a well known poet was not paying attention so therefore failed to do something ie. write a sonnet. Wilbur graduated from Harvard in literature and taught the subject at university for decades and won 2 Pulitzer prizes in it, and if he had wanted to write a sonnet he would have and doesn't need someone like you to explain to him how it should be done.

  • (3/12/2014 7:13:00 PM)


    Dare I say it! This melted me :) . I lived the two perspectives which express in my view how one looks on another assuming we know what they want or need and obviously that we all have different needs. but also it reminds me of my emotional stresses worrying what happened to our dear creations. Lovely (Report) Reply

  • Dean Bottomley (3/12/2014 6:13:00 PM)


    I love the sentiments and the story. Not sure about the format as the rhyme is all over the place. First and forth line and second and third line in verse one, then fifth and seventh and sixth and eighth. In second verse it is again first and fourth and then second and third, then fifth and seventh and sixth and fourth. A strange format? Then it maybe just me not willing to accept an unusual format (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (3/12/2014 8:52:00 AM)


    This poem is amazing in its expression of love and bond created between a fearful and crying child and Nature's silent compassion and consolation through snowman. Loved and touched by the poem very much. (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: snow, child, rain, water, fear, wind, alone, light, god, night, children



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



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