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What Is the Meaning of Lucy Gray Baird’s Name in ‘The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes?’ the William Wordsworth Poem, Explained


A novel by Suzanne Collins Ballad of the Canons and the Snakesadapted for the silver screen by reliable Hunger Games Filmmaker Francis Lawrence is a great reference, and not only in the context of his series, but outside of it as well.

One of my favorite personal references is the poem that inspired Lucy Gray Baird’s name. The singer, who will be played by Rachel Zegler in the film, is named after a William Wordsworth poem that is not a poem but informs the character’s fate. Although we hear the Covey singing this ballad as he walks towards the lake, and Coriolanus asks Lucy Gray what the fate of the subject of the text was, the film does not sufficiently investigate its meaning. “It’s a mystery, girl. Like me,” she tells the man who would later complete the prophecy and turn the poem into a poem for Lucy Gray.

William Wordsworth’s Lucy Gray a ballad

With some minor changes for clarity and language, William Wordsworth’s 1799 poem titled “Lucy Gray,” from the book Lyrical Balladsas an integral part of Collins’ book and in the official soundtrack album for the film, even if it is not in the film itself, because it is six minutes long.

Wordsworth wrote the poem based on a legend about a young child who disappeared in a snowstorm in Yorkshire, England. In real life, her body was found in the canal, but in the creation of the English poet, she disappeared, never to be seen again. Her parents traced her foot in the snow all the way to the middle of the wooden bridge when they suddenly stopped. If the Hunger Games prequel, the parallel is probably jumping out at you already.

The eerie references to “snow” in Woodsworth’s poem

Collins’ choices i Ballad of the Canons and the Snakes all extremely deliberate. From the names, hobbies and relationships of her characters, to references to the original trial such as “The Hanging Tree” and the squishy potato they call katniss. However, I’d argue that none is as serial as the choice to name its leading lady, and young President Snow’s romantic interest, after a character who gets lost in a blizzard, and then go on face to write his story as a perfect expression. this poem.

In Wordsworth’s poem, after Lucy Gray’s father asks her to go home so that she can guide her mother back home safely before the storm breaks, the little girl is happy, and the author describes at the beginning of her journey through the snow as joy and happiness. “free.” He writes, “A fresh new path she broke / Her feet spread the powdery snow, / Went up just like smoke.” It is hard not to associate snow comments with the character of Coriolanus Snow. Like the girl in the poem, Collins’ Lucy Gray also entered Snow’s life as a bold, joyful force that would spread and threaten her stoic exterior by igniting in her emotions that were too passionate to handle rationally, like images of. snow rising up like smoke. She turned her life inside out.

The book is narrated by Coriolanus, and we are entrusted with his colorful commentary on the ballad as sung by Lucy Gray’s friend, Maude Ivory. He is not a fan of the cryptic poem, nor is he impressed by its logic. “A lot of awkward words, but she got lost in the snow. Well, no wonder, if they sent her out in a blizzard. And then she probably froze to death,” the Keeper thinks to himself. His very pragmatic view of the situation is, essentially, “play with fire and you’ll get burned.” And that’s exactly how he sees the world around him; actions must always have consequences, stupidity and navivité will get you into trouble, and it’s your fault if you end up getting hurt.

The disappearance of Lucy Gray in the poem and the book/film

Image via Lionsgate

“It’s a mystery, girl. Just like me.” Lucy Gray did not know how prophetic her words. One of the most genius aspects of it Ballad its ending is ambiguous. In a fit of rage, and after being bitten by a snake, Coriolanus shoots at the trees to catch Lucy Gray. She falls down, but by the time the man comes to her, she is gone. He can find his footprints in the mud but, as in Wordsworth’s poem, after a few steps, the marks disappear, and then we hear Lucy Gray singing “The Hanging Tree,” only for the mockingjays to her tune repeat in a maddening loop. We are left to wonder if some of the hallucinatory episodes were caused by Coriolanus’ snake venom, but the truth is that Lucy Gray was never heard from again. The events in the book are slightly different — there are no footprints and we find out in the end that the snake was not poisonous — but the film chose to go deeper into the poem.

Some people believed that the Mayor of District 12 killed Lucy Gray, but her true fate was never known. One, there is a conversation between Coriolanus and Maude Ivory in the book that foreshadows the whole thing. Speaking of Wordsworth’s piece, the young woman says that she thinks Lucy Gray of the poem “flies like a bird” and that’s why she leaves no trace. Throughout the film, Dr. Gaul, Grandma, and others repeatedly refer to Lucy Gray as “the singer,” and after she leaves, we hear her voice echoing in the sky as the mockingjays repeat their melody – a song that would send. Coriolanus hated Snow until the day he finally died. “The Hanging Tree,” a song written by Lucy Gray after the hanging of a District 12 rebel, became the anthem of the rebellion led by Katniss Everdeen, which finally brought down Snow’s reign 65 years later, and, in a way, avenge the Rebellion. Elusive Victor of the 10th Hunger Games.

“She was rough and ready, / And she does not look back; And sings a single song / That whistles in the wind.”

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