Tintern Abbey, Frost At Midnight And Ode To The West Wind

2179 words - 9 pages

Romanticism was a revolutionary movement which began in English Literature (mainly poetry) around the Eighteenth Century in Western Europe and gained height during the times of the Industrial Revolution. Wordsworth, Byron, Shelley, Keats, Coleridge and Blake were regarded as the ‘Big Six’ of Romanticism. In ‘Tintern Abbey’ by William Wordsworth, ‘Frost at Midnight’ by Samuel Coleridge and ‘ Ode to the West Wind’ by Percy Shelley, we see clearly that nature is the central trigger for the poet’s imagination to take wings and to help each poet to seriously explore his inner world in a meditative manner; the treatment and responses to nature are also similar, despite some individual differences. This is not surprising considering the fact that they were all contemporaries and also showed the same Romantic beliefs about the Nature of Imagination and the Creation of Poetry.

The Romantic poets had a philosophy and a conception on the Creation of Poetry. According to William Wordsworth poetry was ‘a spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings, recollected in tranquility.’ This is clearly seen in the poem ‘I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud..’ The poet generally has an experience which has a tremendous impact upon him. Sometime later in the future when he is in a tranquil mood there is an overflow of these emotions due to a trigger and the imagination is given wings. This leads to the creation of Poetry.

The days and times in which these poets lived and their personal lives also had a significant impact upon their works and poems. Wordworth was one of the greatest Romantic poets. He was fed up of the hustle- bustle of city life which he couldn’t cope up with and thus he turned to nature as seen in ‘Tintern Abbey’. He lived during the French Revolution which later disillusioned him and this can be seen in his poem ‘An Ode to Duty’. Samuel Coleridge had a childhood which was far from nice. After the death of his father he was separated from his sister and was sent off to a boarding school in London. He was put away from nature. His marital life was bothering him as well and he had several differences with his wife. In such a situation all his love poured out on his son Hartley. ‘Frost at Midnight’ is a prayer for the future of his lad. Wordsworth and Coleridge both studied in Cambridge and later composed a collection of poems called ‘Lyrical Ballads’ together. Shelley was a rebellious lad but he had a very vivid imagination as seen in the poem ‘Cloud’. Shelley was fed up of the rules and norms that society imposed upon an individual. He wanted to bring about change in the social systems by the medium of his works and his poem ‘ Ode to the West Wind’ the calls upon the wind to help him in his endeavors. Due to his rebellious nature Shelley was also expelled from Oxford University. At the time of writing his poem Shelley had gone through a lot of trauma which he couldn’t get over easily. He had just lost two of his children. However in addition to this there...

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