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‘Tintern Abbey’: A Poem by William Wordsworth

‘Tintern Abbey’ by William Wordsworth, or to give it its fuller title, ‘Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey’, or to give it its absolutely full title, ‘Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey, On Revisiting the Banks of the Wye during a Tour. July 13, 1798’, is one of Wordsworth’s finest and most celebrated poetic achievements. So ‘Tintern Abbey’ seems like a good poem to select for our new ‘post a poem a day’ feature, which will see us sharing one of our favourite poems every day.

‘Tintern Abbey’ by William Wordsworth

Five years have past; five summers, with the length
Of five long winters! and again I hear
These waters, rolling from their mountain-springs
With a soft inland murmur.—Once again
Do I behold these steep and lofty cliffs,
That on a wild secluded scene impress
Thoughts of more deep seclusion; and connect
The landscape with the quiet of the sky. Read the rest of this entry

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A Short Analysis of William Wordsworth’s ‘The stars are mansions built by Nature’s hand’

‘The stars are mansions built by Nature’s hand’ is not one of the most famous poems by William Wordsworth (1770-1850), nor even one of his more famous sonnets. But it’s a fine poem about the stars, which manages to touch upon the natural world (as we’d expect from a poem by a leading Romantic poet) as well as the divine.

The stars are mansions built by Nature’s hand,
And, haply, there the spirits of the blest
Dwell, clothed in radiance, their immortal vest;
Huge Ocean shows, within his yellow strand,
A habitation marvellously planned,
For life to occupy in love and rest;
All that we see – is dome, or vault, or nest,
Or fortress, reared at Nature’s sage command. Read the rest of this entry

A Short Analysis of William Wordsworth’s ‘To Sleep’

‘To Sleep’ is not one of William Wordsworth’s best-known poems. It isn’t even one of his more famous sonnets. And yet, since it sees a major poet addressing a common theme, ‘To Sleep’ is worth reproducing here, along with a few words of analysis.

To Sleep

A flock of sheep that leisurely pass by,
One after one; the sound of rain, and bees
Murmuring; the fall of rivers, winds and seas,
Smooth fields, white sheets of water, and pure sky;
I have thought of all by turns, and yet do lie
Sleepless! and soon the small birds’ melodies
Must hear, first uttered from my orchard trees;
And the first cuckoo’s melancholy cry. Read the rest of this entry