Skip to main content

Wordsworth's "Ode on Intimations of Immortality"


In a letter written in 1814, Wordsworth referring to " Intimation to Immortality' ode wrote the following to clear his stand on the poem:
 The poem rests entirely upon two recollections of childhood, one that of a splendour in the objects of sense which is passed away and the other an indisposition to bend to the law of death.
[(Quoted in) Durant]

In a later comment, Wordswoth states that for a child, the world seems more vivid and has a strange charm, which an adult is unable to view. Wordsworth through his recollections tried to revisit that wonderland which he was more real for him than the present real world and it is on this recollection  the Ode is based upon. Along with it Wordsworth has used many theories and myths regarding human existence. But it is sufficient to say that "From this starting point, the poem examines the whole story of humanlife as an excile from an earlier and more perfect state' (Durant)

The primary point that the man lives in "less than perfect condition', has been interpreted in various myths, one of which (and of course the most popular) is the myth regarding adam and eve in Bible. "This story tells us how through the eating the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, man first knows pain, guilt and anxiety' (Durant).The Greek myth about Pandora's box also narrates how the opening of the box by two children brought sorrows into the world.

Ancient philosophy also supported this myth indirectly. Plato's adaption of Pythagorian theory states that the soul originally resides in the supernal region of the pure idea and when the soul is born, it enters into the "dark prison house' of this world by losing its memory and thus goes farthest from heaven.

Though Wordsworth used this myth in his poem he doesn't advance the argument in its favour. In Durant's words: "The poem makes use of the myth of pre-existence, but this is not what the poem "means' ' (Durant).
He more over adds that "In one sense the meaning of the poem is simple. The poet raises the question of the value of life itself, once the primal joy experienced in childhood gone by. The first four stanzas are given to a statement of the sense of loss felt by the poet when as an adult he can no longer experience the unity of being and sense of illumination he remembers from his childhood' (Durant).

In the first stanza he writes "There was a time', referring to  his childhood, when "the meadow, grove and stream, / The earth and every common sight'---- seemed to him in "celestial light' which he "now can see no more'. This stanza infact describes poet's lamentation (at least a kind of ) on not being able to see any more the "glory and the freshness of a dream' that his childhood had.
Echoing What he said in the first stanza, Wordswoth writes in the second one that wherever he goes he knows "That there hath past away a glory from the earth'. The tone becomes more sad in stanza three and here the poet confess it in the line: "To me alone there came a thought of grief' --- and also provides the clue to the cause of writing this poem: "A finely utterance gave that thought relief'.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Discover What Good Writing Is All About

Writing is a form of preserved talk, talk that has been pinned down on paper so the words can be heard again. The basic principles of good writing, apart, from grammatical correctness, might be presented as follows:

1) written sentences should sound like natural speech;

2) the words we use must be exact, fresh, full of strength and vitality. Picture making words are better than vague, general words;

3) fresh point of view will give flavor to the style;

4) humor will lighten it.

Though, it is true that written sentences should sound like natural speech, they fully present an image of the natural speech. The reasons for this are fairly obvious: natural speech is a great deal more than words; it is also tone of voice, facial expression, gestures, and even the speaker’s appearance.

The whole point of writing is to create something better than we really talk – something more interesting, more thoughtful, and more effective in every way, for “effectiveness is what matters, and if an expres…

Article Submissions - Pointing You in the Right Direction

All of you who have been thinking of publishing articles probably seem to be noticing a lot more ads showing up when you search Google for article submission sites. So what does this all mean for you?

Well it leaves you the choice of where you wish to submit your article to. Lately new software is out that can let people get an article directory up and running in just a couple of hours and it seems every little fish wants a piece of the action.

So how do you choose the correct article directory for your article submission?

Here are a few tips to get you in the right direction:

Design - You probably are asking yourself why the design of the article directory has anything to do with how good this directory is for you. Well it is, it shows how serious the owners of the site are taking it - the more professional and maintained it looks the longer the site will be online and the more popularity it will gain.

RSS Feeds - Make sure the article directory you are submitting your article to h…

Ready, Set, Go Sell Your Book In The Real World!

We hear a lot these days about more books actually being sold 'outside' the traditional bookstore.  Think about it. When was the last time you actually took time to linger and explore the bookshelves? When did you last impulsively grab a book, flip it over, read the blurbs, and finger through a few chapters? Let's face it, most of us are too hurried.

So What's The Point?
If you don't take the time to browse, why expect your potential customer to do so? 

Try This:
Grab about five copies of your book, and head for the "Ma and Pa" stores in your hometown area.  Pick a time when you know it won't be too busy. Talk to the owner or manager. Ask him if you may set up a small display on his counter. Offer him a percentage of each sale.

Get Impulsive!
Go for the impulse buyers!  Haven't you at one time, while waiting at a cash register, seen a small display of books on the counter?  Before it was your turn to get checked out, you grabbed it, became exci…

The article about nothing

Hmmm, no ideas? So what? Ever thought of writing about….nothing? You know this is actually common nowadays. I don’t know how you feel but I am overwhelmed about the abundance of information that can be found everywhere.

Everyone is writing about everything. The same subjects are written and rewritten and rewritten and I look and them and wonder how the hell is this supposed to help the modern man become more efficient? The truth is that we are in a hurry, our whole lives are spent running from place to place, trying to keep up with the others around us. We sleep less trying to make more time for ourselves, but we end up wasting that time on useless things.

How about TV ? How useless is that? I really think that you are in the danger of becoming dumber if you spend too much time in front of it. There are people that spend half of the day, that becomes half of their life in front of the TV. You know  what the worst part is ? Most shows on TV are for complete morons … instead of watchi…

The Most Important Rule Of Writing

So many of difficulties struggling writers face occur when they ignore this simple rule. Once you embrace the fact that writing is a process rather than an event, once you recognize that the more time you give the process to work the better, then not only will writing be easier you will also write better.

Writing is a process. While that process varies somewhat based on the task and the individual writer, the basic steps it includes are the same no matter what.

First is the initial brainstorming process. No actual writing takes place in this step although there may be some note taking or non-stop writing exercises. The more time you give yourself for this process then the easier the next step will be. Experiment with various forms of brainstorming and prewriting to determine which works best for you and your various writing tasks. What may work in one type of writing may not work as well with another. The more you experiment then the more likely you will find the optimum brainstormin…

Write About Something That Will Change Your Life!

It's been said that you should "write about what you know". It's also been said that doing that condemns you to a life of boredom as you'll never grow beyond your current limitations.

Not very helpful, is it?

It's also been said that you should write about what you're passionate about, interested in or otherwise taken by, as you'll spend so much time researching it, writing it and rewriting it, that it had better light your fire, or it will drive you insane. And then again, others say don't tackle a topic you know nothing about, you should write what you know....

And so we go around in ever decreasing circles.

I actually subscribe to the "write what you know" line of thought, but with a bit of a twist. I encourage writers to write about what they know on an emotional level.

Try writing a story that heals YOU. Emotions are the universal language. We all feel the same feelings, we may just experience them in different ways. We all recogni…