William Cullen Bryant is one of the most influential people of his time. He was born on November 3, 1794. He is most well-known for writing his poem “Thanatopsis”, which would roughly translate from Greek to “a meditation upon death” in English. This poem is by far his most popular poem. He spent majority of his life studying law, then died as the editor of the New York Evening Post. He was extremely politically fueled and also did not agree with the commonly accepted view of heaven and religion; this idea is shown in his poem. Overall, William Cullen Bryant is the most important American romantic poet of his time.
Poets such as Bryant have forever been trying to write their thoughts and feelings down on paper. They write their words like a painter lays their brush to a canvas. They express ideas that not only exemplify the beauty of life and nature, but also the darkest side of one’s life; death. This notion of death is what most people see as a sad ending to a life filled with beauty, though William Cullen Bryant does not see death in that way. In his poem “Thanatopsis” he offers an optimistic outlook on death. He views it as nothing more than the moment you become one with nature and venture through its beauty for all eternity. It is truly a work of art. This is shown by the use of his effective writing skills he uses skills such as, alliteration, similes and personification that make the poem come alive, just as a painter strives to make his art come alive. Also, this poem is art due to the deep thinking required to grasp its concept of death, you cannot read it just once you must read in between the lines and analyze what the poet is saying.
I believe this is art because it truly brings out the emotions of the reader throughout the poem. It confronts the feelings of a reader who fears death. The poem expresses the sorrows that a person feels during death, but, it is quick to offer a comforting tone. This idea is shown when Bryant says that when thoughts of death arise go to nature to be comforted (8-15). This Cleary expresses Bryant’s opinion that nature is one of the most powerful forces in the universe. Furthermore, he goes on to say that we should not fear death when he states “…All that breath / will share thy destiny…’’ (60-61). this quote puts death into perspective, Saying that everyone who is living right now will share the same fate as you. Throughout the poem Bryant mentions nature and death multiple times. He sees them as being intertwined, where death is an opportunity to become one with nature and truly explore its beauty. An appropriate theme for this poem is to not be fearful of death, in fact, accept it, because nature and its beauty will be there for all eternity. In normal writing it would be hard to express such deep feelings such as theses but, William Cullen Bryant does an amazing job. This goes to prove further more why this poetry is art.
This poem expresses those thoughts and feelings so vividly, but, it does so...