Acquainted with the Night and the oil painting Nighthawks

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The essay "Acquainted with the Night and the oil painting Nighthawks" discovers the Robert Frost’s poem “Acquainted with the Night” and the oil painting of Edward Hopper titled, “Nighthawks.” The images in the poem revolve around the theme. The night, rain, his aloofness, and solitary walking towards the “furthest city lane” all lead readers to imagine the loneliness and isolation of the man. There is no mention of company, relationships, etc. Only a watchman, whom the persona ignores, is mentioned in the poem. His isolation is strongly expressed by the pronoun “I” at the start of each line in the first stanza. Noticeably, seven out of fourteen lines of the poem start with “I.” This recurrence of the reference to the persona strongly suggests his isolation. In “Nighthawks,” the theme of shadow and solitude is also reflected as the scene is set at night. Shadow is literally cast on the background and the idea of suffering may be felt with the forlorn gesture of one customer in the diner. The man who sits alone on the left seems to represent the persona in Frost’s poem. He displays the same solitariness expressed by the persona. He wears a blue coat and hat, drinks alone, and refuses to talk to the other figures. Like the persona in the poem, he submits to shadow. In contrast, the other figures seem to be enjoying each other’s company. Therefore, unlike the poem that centers on the theme of shadow and solitude, the painting also hints on the brighter side of life. The light in the diner agrees.