Philip Larkin once recalled hearing William Wordsworth’s poem ‘Ode: Intimations of Immortality’ recited on BBC radio, and having to pull over to the side of the road, as his eyes had filled with tears. ‘Intimations of Immortality’ remains a powerful meditation on death, the loss of childhood innocence, and the way we tend to get further away from ourselves – our true roots and our beliefs – as we grow older.
Ode: Intimations of Immortality
And I could wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety.
(Wordsworth, ‘My Heart Leaps Up’)