Snow by Alamgir Hashmi, Summary and Analysis


 Introduction of the Poet

Alamgir Hashmi (1951), is generally regarded as one of the prominent English literary figures of Avant-Garde (a modernist movement), born in Pakistan. He is best known as an English poet. He is a prose writer and author of many popular books. Alamgir Hashmi's poetry represents Pakistani society and culture.

According to Hashmi, poetry is not only the spontaneous overflow of powerful emotions "but also it is a way to represent the culture and people. Like his contemporaries, the poetry of Hashmi is also revolving around the themes of partition, death, and strong sentiments. His poetry is rich in literary taste and gets critical acclaim all over the world. Famous poetical works include Encounter with the SirensThis Time in Lahore, Eid Morningand An Old Chair. Taufiq Rafat and Daud Kamal were his contemporaries.


We wake up

to crazy things:

the pine trees rinsed in ice,

their glass twigs shattered below,

Our brains like eggs scrambled,

after dim sleep and snow.

What can one make of snow

this late,



pinned to the window?

No thought in winter would


itself to fragrance,

or summer wit.

In this ghastly white,

when I want to say I am afraid

and wordless.

I cannot breathe my breath.

I have seen it happen.

Once stealthily

as in grey, white, off-white

hair in my father's beard

which the razor has never let

anyone see.

and the day

dazzled by the light of his commitment

he frowned--

it is not light

to be on the wrong side

of things--

he was already losing weight.

And two years later

two more wrinkles on the face

made him forever angry.


The poem Snow by Alamgir Hashmi is a modern poem that revolves around different themes, issues, and ideas. The poem is a reflection of nature. The poem has forty lines without any pattern or rhyming scheme. The poem is written in a very simple language. 


The poem opens with the description of snow. At night the sound of the storm continues over and there and the poet listens to all the crazy things that are happening. The beautiful green pine trees are covered by snow from bottom to top and rinse in ice. Glass twigs have fallen below due to the pressure of snow and ice. Little branches break and there is destruction everywhere. In this situation, the brains are not working and are confused. Here the poet compares it with the egg's breaking which leads to uncomfortable sleep. Due to the ongoing results, he did not sleep well which is also responsible for his scrambled brain.

The chrysanthemum is a small flower used by the poet as an image. The small flower broke and was pinned to the window. There are two images used by poets, the pines and small flowers.

In winter no thoughts like fragrance, flowers, and greenery are expected to happen. The Winter season is the cruelest in one way or another. The poet says ice covers everywhere and I am afraid to say anything. It is not a good time for him to enjoy the beauty. Basically, he memorizes the scene of snow which is destructive for tiny plants and flowers but it can be enjoyed.

Snow used to come into the beard of his father also. His father shows the symbol of grey, white, and off-white. As the father continues to shave his face so they can't see this whiteness.

Its kind of conflict with nature is shown here.

The age and style are changing which is inevitable. Aging is a natural process. Wrinkles are shown and it shows the oldness. Youth changes into old. It reflects the age of his father. These wrinkles show his father's impression which becomes permanent.

He is sitting in the room and takes breakfast first, 


Snow has different symbols but most of the critics believe that it can be symbolized as the lack of the warmth of life. The snow in this poem reflects the old age and the reduced strength of someone.

Punctuation has been regularly used with question marks and commas to show contrast and comparison. Different adjectives have been used and they represent renaissance poetry.

Our brains like eggs scrambled,

as in grey, white, off-white

The poem revolves around the philosophical theme of inevitable aging. The poem provokes some kind of thoughts in the minds of people about how they can keep on living in that way. It is an imaginative poem.


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