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Introduction to Nature Poets


Late 1700s to the mid-1800s
Appreciating feeling rather than thought, and wild beauty rather than things made by man became a focus for many artists during what was called the Romantic Movement. Romantic poets promoted admiration and respect for the natural world both the physical and the emotional aspects of nature. Romantics set themselves in opposition to the order and rationality of classical and neoclassical artistic precepts to embrace freedom and revolution in their art and politics. British poets such as William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Lord Byron, and John Keats were the driving force during this era. Other poets that we will also study for their romantic style include; William Blake, Emily Dickinson, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Christina Rossetti and William Shakespeare.
Romanticism was an artistic movement but it was also an intellectual movement that affected most of Western Europe. It arose from a revolt

against aristocratic, social, and political norms of the Enlightenment period (governed by logic, reason and laws of science) and a reaction against the rationalisation (explaining) of nature. In both art and literature this revolt stressed that strong emotion was the source of creative experience, placing new emphasis on such emotions as trepidation, horror, and the wonder experienced in confronting the awesomeness of nature. Romanticism also legitimised the individual imagination as an important authority which permitted freedom from classical notions. Romanticism was arguably the largest artistic movement of the late 1700s. Its influence was felt across continents and through every artistic discipline (i.e. music, art, politics) into the mid-nineteenth century, and many of its values and beliefs can still be seen in contemporary poetry. Key ideals presented by romantic poets: They achieved a whole new perspective on nature and peoples relationship to nature. They preferred / encouraged spontaneous and emotional responses over logical thought. They valued imagination over all mental faculties. They believed that without imagination, you were not a human being.

Contents
Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5-6 Page 7 Page 8-9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20

Introduction to Nature poets Reading and Responding to a Poem Using similes Daffodils by William Wordsworth, Daffodils Analysis (25 marks) Amazingly Awesome Alliteration Tyger by William Blake, Tyger Analysis (25 marks) Perfecting Personification Nature, the Gentlest Mother by Emily Dickinson A Green Cornfield Christina Rossetti and Analysis Symbolism of Colour and Other Symbols from To a Skylark by Percy Bysshe Shelley, Enjambment and Analysis Sonnet 18 Shall I Compare Thee to a Summers Day? The Sonnet Form Spring Gerard Manley Hopkins Bright Star John Keats comparison with Sonnet XXIII - To the North Star Charlotte Smith Upon Westminster Bridge William Wordsworth Writing your own poems task
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Reading and Responding to a Poem


In the Common Entrance Exam you are tested on your ability to understand and comment on an unseen poem. Never fear! The art of analysing poetry lies in learning how to read a poem. How to read a poem: Read the poem over several times. Read it aloud to yourself; poetry is meant to be heard! When reading aloud, pay attention to spacing and punctuation (full stops, ellipses and dashes require a deliberate pause while commas only need a shorter break.). If there is no punctuation at the end of a line, no pause should be placed there, continue without break to the next line. Look carefully at the words that really grab your attention, consider why they have been used. Also look closely at the different techniques that stand out to you, ask yourself what effect they have on the poems overall meaning. Read slowly. Try to follow the thought of the poem continuously through to the end.

Once the general meaning has been gathered, break the poem down to discover its deeper meaning:

Consider if the title has connotative meanings, think of synonyms for the title, and see if you can connect the title to as many different things as you can. Often the title can be the key to unlocking what the poet wanted to say. Ask yourself: What is the general attitude of the poem? What is the tone (mood, atmosphere)? What feelings does it stir up in you, the reader? What emotions do you think the poet wanted to awaken? Who is the speaker in the poem? Is it the poet or are they writing as someone, something else. Where is the poem set? Look closely at the punctuation, word choice and what sound the words make: Soft words like slide, feather, laughter usually add a gentle feel and mood Harder words with harsh sounds like corked, guzzle, battled can lend an angry, harsh atmosphere

Applying this to timed conditions: 1. Look carefully at the questions you have been asked to answer, highlight the key words. 2. Read once and respond to the poem what does it makes you think and feel. Write these down in note form. 3. Read the poem a second time, this time annotating the poem and identify the different techniques used; simile, metaphor, rhyme, lines length, strong powerful words (vocabulary), enjambment, personification, onomatopoeia... 4. Now evaluate if your first impressions of the poem were right, are there other opinions or ideas about the poem? Re-read a third time, just to be sure! 5. Now you are ready to look again at the questions and complete the analysis

Remember to attempt every question Look at the marks awarded for each question, this will indicate how much detail you will need to give Poetry comprehension tasks are worth 25 marks You are given 30 minutes to answer the questions + 5 minutes reading.
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Similes
Similes:______________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________________________
Complete the following by trying to make the most interesting comparisons possible:
As deep as _____________________________________________________________________________________ As light as a ____________________________________________________________________________________ As slow as a ___________________________________________________________________________________ As high as a ____________________________________________________________________________________ As flat as a _____________________________________________________________________________________ As hard as... ______________________________________________________________________________________ As dry as ... ______________________________________________________________________________________ As clever as ... ____________________________________________________________________________________ As crazy as ... _____________________________________________________________________________________ As cool as ... ______________________________________________________________________________________

Explain how each simile below describes a person. Try to think of words that are similar to what is being described.
As agile as a monkey: describes a person who is a quick mover, who is swift and light on their feet._________ As blind as a bat: _________________________________________________________________________________ Like a rock: _____________________________________________________________________________________ As bright as a button: _____________________________________________________________________________ Like an erupting volcano: __________________________________________________________________________

Whats the image in your mind? Draw the similes below:


The boxers punch was like being hit with an iron fist. The birds on the tree branch looked like music notes on a page. The car shot through the night like a bullet. Her eyes were like still, blue pools.

When analysing a simile it is important to try and identify what the speaker or writer is trying to communicate.
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Daffodils by William Wordsworth (1804)


I wandered lonely as a cloud That floats on high o'er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd, A host, of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath the trees, Fluttering and dancing in the breeze. Continuous as the stars that shine And twinkle on the milky way, They stretched in never-ending line Along the margin of a bay: Ten thousand saw I at a glance, Tossing their heads in sprightly dance. The waves beside them danced, but they Out-did the sparkling leaves in glee; A poet could not be but gay, In such a jocund company! I gazedand gazedbut little thought What wealth the show to me had brought: For oft, when on my couch I lie In vacant or in pensive mood, They flash upon that inward eye Which is the bliss of solitude; And then my heart with pleasure fills, And dances with the daffodils.

Locate and annotate the words and phrases used to describe daffodils. What view of nature is presented?

William Wordsworth was a defining poet of the English Romantic Movement. Like other Romantics, Wordworths personality and poetry were deeply influenced by his love of nature, especially by the sights and scenes of the Lake District, in which he spent most of his adult life. Wordsworth wrote Daffodils on a stormy day in spring, while walking along with his sister Dorothy near Ullswater Lake, in England. He imagined that the daffodils were dancing and invoking him to join and enjoy the breezy nature of the fields. The poem contains six lines in four stanzas, as an appreciation of daffodils and is a simple and melodious poem that celebrates the happiness that nature evokes.

DAFFODILS
By William Wordsworth
What do you think of when you think of daffodils? ______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________________________________

Write an example of the following from the poem: Simile: _____________________________________________________________________________ Personification:______________________________________________________________________ Exaggeration (hyperbole):_____________________________________________________________ 1. What does the poet compare himself to in the first verse? How does this give us an idea of his viewpoint on nature? (4 marks) What are the exact words he uses to describe what he sees? (1 mark) What words does he use to describe the movement of the flowers? What does this suggest about his or their mood? (3 marks) What does he compare these flowers to in the second verse? What does this comparison make you think about nature? (3 marks) Why does he think the daffodils are better than the waves? (2 marks) What do you think jocund means? (2marks) Explain the meaning of the line, Which is the bliss of solitude. (2 marks) The last verse is a change in time and place. Describe what the poet is imagining happening in the last verse. (4 marks) Why do you think this is one of the most loved poems in the English language? (4 marks)

2. 3.

4.

5. 6. 7. 8.

9.

When you have finished: Go back and re-read your answers. Check that they are written in full sentences and include the key words from the questions. Make sure you have used examples/evidence from the poem to support your answers.

Extension:

Research William Wordsworth and make at least half a page of notes in your book. Compare Wordworths poem with To Daffodils by Robert Herrick and write a one page summary. Write your own poem about your favourite flower in the same style.
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Amazingly Awesome Alliteration!


Alliteration is the repetition of letters at the start of words; this creates a repetition of sound within a line of poetry
big brown bear Write 3 examples of your own: 1.___________________________________________________________________________________________________________ 2.___________________________________________________________________________________________________________ 3.__________________________________________________________________________________________________________ pink pig great green giant sunny sky

Different types of alliteration:


Assonance - the repetition of vowel sounds (a, e, i, o, u, ou, ea,) - "I wore a fleecy green jacket easy and tall." Consonance - is the repetition of consonant sounds (c, d, f, g, h, j, k, l, m, n, p, q, r, t, v, w, x, y, z, th, ff, ) at the beginning of words - "Big, bold, blobs of rain." Sibilance- repetition of S- slowly but surely the sand swallowed my shoes. The different forms of alliteration can greatly affect the sound, therefore the mood, of a poem. A repetition of vowel sounds can sometimes create an angry mood, whereas softer sounding consonant sounds created a mellower mood. Of course, there are no set rules for this and it always depends on what the poem is about. A common use for alliteration is emphasis, so if a poet is using alliteration they want to draw your attention to those particular words. Its your job to think about why.

Alliteration is a powerful way to: allow the poem to flow more quickly as the sounds are repeated slow the poem down as each word is emphasised create clear images create a certain mood or atmosphere heavy or light, quick or slow

Write alliteration words for these letters:

B: _________________________________________________________________________________ M: ________________________________________________________________________________ T: _________________________________________________________________________________ R: _________________________________________________________________________________ L: _________________________________________________________________________________ The thunder from the CLOUD was LOUD. Try and make sentences using assonance: Use the sound AI: _________________________________________________________________________ Use the sound EA: _________________________________________________________________________ Use the sound AY: _________________________________________________________________________
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The CLOCK went tick-TOCK.

William Blake (1757 1827)


Blake was a poet, painter, visionary mystic and engraver who illustrated and printed his own books. He proclaimed the supremacy of the imagination over the rationalism and materialism of the 18th century. Misunderstanding shadowed his career as a writer and artist and it was left to later generations to recognise his importance. When he wrote Tyger tyger, often thought of now as a poem for children, [Blake] was not talking about the dangerous charm of the almost mythological beast (tigers were kept in the menagerie at the Tower of London) but the misused power of the French revolutionaries. Blake was horrified by the September Massacres of 1792 in Paris during which the French allowed the Terror to be unleashed against their own people. This also explains why Blakes illustration for this poem shows a sad creature; powerful, yes, but dominated on the page by a stronger looking and more dominating tree (perhaps intended to evoke the guillotine?). In Blakes own time readers of the poem would have made the connection, tygers being the name given to the Parisian mob by the Times newspaper when reporting from the riots.

The Tyger by William Blake Tyger! Tyger! burning bright In the forests of the night, What immortal hand or eye Could frame thy fearful symmetry? In what distant deeps or skies Burnt the fire of thine eyes? On what wings dare he aspire? What the hand dare sieze the fire? And what shoulder, & what art. Could twist the sinews of thy heart? And when thy heart began to beat, What dread hand? & what dread feet? What the hammer? what the chain? In what furnace was thy brain? What the anvil? what dread grasp Dare its deadly terrors clasp? When the stars threw down their spears, And watered heaven with their tears, Did he smile his work to see? Did he who made the Lamb make thee? Tyger! Tyger! burning bright In the forests of the night, What immortal hand or eye Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

The Tyger Comprehension Questions


Questions:

1.

In your own words, write out the question that the first verse asks the reader. (2marks) Why do you think the poet uses the words distant deeps or skies? (2 marks) Pick out the words and phrases from the first four verses that make the tiger sound fierce and write them down. (5 marks) Write down the words from verse four that suggest industry. (5 marks) Look at the last two line of verse five. Who is he that the poet refers to? (2 marks) Although verse one and verse six appear the same, what word changes? (2marks) Why has the poet changed this word? What does he want us the reader to think? (4 marks) Why has the poet set the poem out as a series of questions? What does he want us to think about? (3 marks)

2. 3.

4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Extension:

How does Blakes view of nature compare with Wordworths? Is it similar or different? Write a minimum of three paragraphs comparing the two poems. or Read Blakes The Lamb, how does it compare with the views of nature presented in The Tyger? Compare at the three ideas or techniques used in each poem.

Personification is giving human or animal abilities and qualities to non-human objects to make them seem alive
The headlights blinked in the darkness. The sun smiled brightly all day. Leaves danced in the breeze. Identify the personification below: a) b) c) d) e) f) g) h) i) j) A young boy ran to open the door for his mother. I found all my paperwork sitting on the table. Trucks were filled with large packages. In the heavens there were many bright stars. Only a small tree sighed in the gentle breeze. The building was closed because of the fire. Fog crept in from the sea. The flames of the bushfire raced across the hill. A cold wind blew from the South. The brook chattered merrily over the stones. yes /no yes /no yes /no yes /no yes /no yes /no yes /no yes /no yes /no yes /no

Choose a noun from List A, a verb from List B and create your own personified sentences:
List A Sun Moon Stars Sky Sea Stone Night Mountain Dawn Morning Lake Flower List B Tells Shows Teaches Listens Remembers Brings Looks Dances Dreams Guides Takes Wonders

1. _________________________________________________ _________________________________________________ 2. _________________________________________________ _________________________________________________ 3. _________________________________________________ _________________________________________________

Nature, the Gentlest Mother


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by Emily Dickinson

Nature the gentlest mother is, Impatient of no child, The feeblest of the waywardest. Her admonition mild. In forest and the hill By traveller be heard, Restraining rampant squirrel Or too impetuous bird. How fair her conversation A summer afternoon, Her household her assembly; And when the sun go down, Her voice among the aisles Incite the timid prayer Of the minutest cricket, The most unworthy flower. When all the children sleep, She turns as long away As will suffice tolight her lamps, Then bending from the sky With infinite affection An infiniter care, Her golden finger on her lip, Wills silence everywhere.

Look closely at the poem and highlight the comparisons made between nature and a mother. Are these descriptions fair? What other similarities/differences between nature and a mother that could be made? Write your answers into your workbook.

Emily Dickinson (1830 1886) was born in Amherst, Massachusetts. Around 1850 she started to write poetry and over the year experimented with a number of different styles and types of poems. She was very prolific, wrote over 1800 poems; but was equally shy and solitary. In her own lifetime only six of her poems were published. After her death her poems were brought out by her sister Lavinia, who edited three volumes between 1891 and 1896. Even then the task wasnt fully completed, and it wasnt until the 1950s that the job of bringing Dickinsons poetry to the world was finally completed. In the poem above, nature is personified as a gentle mother as there is no image in the world more caring than a gentle mother. Nature watches over her creations which are also personified as children. In the second verse, humans represent the trespasser, an unwanted guest that frightens nature's children and the mother does everything in her power to shield her children's ears and distract them from the uncleanness of the world. That's what nature does when human travellers come near. The key theme in this poem is that nature represents purity and love, far outstripping the creations of humans. Extension: Read one or more of Dickinsons other nature poem: The Sun Just Touched the Morning, I Held A Jewel, My River and write a comparison.

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A Green Cornfield

The earth was green, the sky was blue: I saw and heard one sunny morn A skylark hang between the two, A singing speck above the corn; A stage below, in gay accord, White butterflies danced on the wing, And still the singing skylark soared, And silent sank and soared to sing. The cornfield stretched a tender green To right and left beside my walks; I knew he had a nest unseen Somewhere among the million stalks. And as I paused to hear his song While swift the sunny moments slid, Perhaps his mate sat listening long, And listened longer than I did.

Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

List the colours that have been used in the poem and what you think they symbolise. ( 4marks) Where has Rossetti used sibilance in the poem and what is the effect? (5 marks) Why has Rossetti used birds and butterflies in this poem to present a positive and beautiful image of nature? (4 marks) And listened longer than I did. What do you think this line means? Is it a good line to end the poem with? (6 marks) What are the techniques that interest you the most as reader? (6 marks)

Christina Georgina Rossetti (1830 1894) was an English poet who wrote a variety of romantic, devotional, and children's poems. She was one of the most important of English woman poets, who was the sister of the painter-poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and a member of the Pre-Raphaelite art movement. In the poem A Green Cornfield, the narrator is reliving a special afternoon she once spent in a cornfield. For the first time she acknowledged the million stalks and realizes how much humans should appreciate the rich, fertile soil of the earth and its ability to produce food for humanity. She finds solace in watching the butterflies and pauses to listen to the skylarks serenading one another. She unintentionally loses track of time while in the cornfield because she is treasuring each moment of listening to the sounds of the creatures and the witnessing the commonly unnoticed beauty of nature.

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Sometimes poets use colour in interesting ways to show a particular ideas or emotions. This is because we tend to associate certain colours with certain things. White weddings purity snow Now you try: Black Green Red

For example:

cleanliness

Yellow

Blue

When a poet uses an object (such as colour) to represent something else it is called symbolism. Symbols are everywhere! What could the following symbolise:

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Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792 1822) was one of the major English Romantic poets and is critically regarded among the finest lyric poets in the English language. Shelley was famous for his association with John Keats and Lord Byron and the novelist Mary Shelley (author of Frankenstein) was his second wife. He is most famous for such classic anthology verse works as Ozymandias, Ode to the West Wind and To a Skylark, which are among the most popular and critically acclaimed poems in the English language. To a Skylark was inspired by an evening walk in the country near Livorno, Italy, with Mary Shelley, and describes the appearance and song of a skylark they come upon. He asks the bird to teach him for then he would overflow with harmonious madness, and his song would be so beautiful that the world would listen to him in the he is listening to the skylark.

from To a Skylark by Percy Bysshe Shelley (17921822) HAIL to thee, blithe spirit! Bird thou never wert That from heaven or near it Pourest thy full heart In profuse strains of unpremeditated art. Higher still and higher From the earth thou springest, Like a cloud of fire; The blue deep thou wingest, And singing still dost soar, and soaring ever singest. In the golden light'ning Of the sunken sun, O'er which clouds are bright'ning, Thou dost float and run, Like an unbodied joy whose race is just begun.

Enjambment: when a line of a poem continues through to the next line. Most often used to indicate that the thought is going on. Depending on the poem, enjambment can suggest excitement and joy or the opposite: anger and confusion. Either way it suggests that the poet cannot contain his thoughts structured enough to fit onto the one line.
1. Why do you think Shelly has used enjambment in this poem? How does it show how he is feeling? ( 4 marks) 2. What do you think a skylark (or birds in general) symbolise? ( 2 marks) 3. Has Shelly used any colours or similes in this poem? What are they and what do you think they mean. (8 marks) 4. The speaker believes that the bird is not a mortal bird at all. How do we know this? What does he call the bird? In your own words explain what you think this means. ( 6 marks) 5. Choose one other poem we have studied and compare how nature is presented as immense and overwhelming. (5 marks) 14

SONNET 18
Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate: Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer's lease hath all too short a date: Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, And often is his gold complexion dimm'd; And every fair from fair sometime declines, By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd; But thy eternal summer shall not fade Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest; Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade, When in eternal lines to time thou growest: So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, So long lives this and this gives life to thee.

1. What question does the poetic speaker ask himself in the opening lines of this sonnet? (2marks) 2. What does he ultimately decide about whether or not this comparison is a good one? (2marks) 3. What are some of the problems with a summer's day that the poet discusses in the first eight lines? (6marks) 4. What does the poet mean when he says, "But thy eternal summer shall not fade"? (3marks) 5. The poet also promises: "Nor shall death brag thou wander'st in his shade." Does this seem possible or plausible as a promise? (4marks) 6. The last two lines, however, limit the promise to "So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see, / So long lives this, and this gives life to thee." What does the "this" refer to? How does "this" continue to give this young woman life--even four hundred years after Shakespeare wrote the poem? (8marks)

In the sonnet, the speaker compares his beloved to the summer season, and argues that his beloved is better. He also states that his beloved will live on forever through the words of the poem.

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The Sonnet Form


Classical sonnets: The sonnet is a form of lyric poem which always follows a set structure of fourteen lines. As a poetic form, sonnets first appeared in Italy in the late 13 th century and were given their classical form by the Italian poet, Petrarch. His sonnets were consistently divided into an octave (a verse of 8 lines) and a sestet (6 lines), marked by a pause between them in the movement of the poem. His sonnets also used limited rhyme variations to a total of five, with the octave rhyming as ABBA ABBA and the sestet as CDECDE. The common theme running through Petrarchs sonnets was unrequited love. Each poem was a love poem to an idealised woman who failed to return his love.

English sonnets: The sonnet form was brought into England by the Earl of Surry and Sir Thomas Wyatt and was popularised by Shakespeare in the 16th and early 17th century. Structure: Shakespeares sonnets were written as three quatrains (four lines per verse) with a concluding rhyming couplet. Other English writers such as Donne and Hopkins followed more classical division of an octave and a sestet. Theme: Shakespeares themes centre on aspects of love, though other English poets such as Milton, Wordsworth, Bryon, Keats and Hopkins extend the sonnet to cover descriptions of nature, inner struggles of the soul, hymns if praise and other diverse subjects. Rhythm: Classical and Shakespearean sonnets follow a predominately iambic rhythm. Iambic rhythms have two syllables with the stress always in the second syllable as, for example, in the word compare. Quite simply, it sounds like this: dee DUM, dee DUM, dee DUM, dee DUM, dee DUM. It consists of a line of five iambic feet, ten syllables with five unstressed and five stressed syllables. It is the first and last sound we ever hear, it is the rhythm of the human heart beat. Well an iamb is dee Dum it is the heart beat. Penta is from the Greek for five. Meter is really the pattern So, there are five iambs per line!

= Iambic penta meter

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Spring
Nothing is so beautiful as spring When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush; Thrush's eggs look little low heavens, and thrush Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring The ear, it strikes like lightnings to hear him sing; The glassy peartree leaves and blooms, they brush The descending blue; that blue is all in a rush With richness; the racing lambs too have fair their fling.

What is all this juice and all this joy? A strain of the earth's sweet being in the beginning In Eden garden.Have, get, before it cloy, Before it cloud, Christ, lord, and sour with sinning, Innocent mind and Mayday in girl and boy, Most, O maid's child, thy choice and worthy the winning.
Gerard Manley Hopkins

Underline the alliteration Circle the assonance

How does this affect how the poem sounds?

Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-89) is usually considered to be a modern poet because his poetry was not published until well into the 20th century. Since publication, his poetry has been recognised as being amongst the most original in modern times. A Jesuit priest, Hopkins naturally tended to write about the revelations of God which he found in nature and in the world around him. Hopkins wrote most frequently in the sonnet form. He generally preferred the Classical sonnet and typically used the octave to present some account of personal or sensory experience and then employ the sestet for philosophical reflection.

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Bright Star, Would I Were Steadfast as Thou Art by John Keats


Bright star, would I were steadfast as thou art Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night, And watching, with eternal lids apart, Like nature's patient sleepless eremite, The moving waters at their priestlike task Of pure ablution round earth's human shores, Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask Of snow upon the mountains and the moors; No yet still steadfast, still unchangeable, Pillow'd upon my fair love's ripening breast, To feel for ever its soft fall and swell, Awake forever in a sweet unrest, Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath, And so live ever or else swoon to death.

"Bright Star!" is considered one of Keats's loveliest and most paradoxical (contradictory) poems. The speaker of the poem wishes he were as eternal as a star but he does not wish to exist by himself, in "lone splendour." He longs to be "Awake forever" with his Love. Unfortunately, these two desiresto experience love and to be eternaldo not go together. To love, he must be human, and therefore not an unchanging thing like the star. Despite the awareness that the speaker seems to express about the paradox of having love and immortality, the poem as a whole can also be seen as the speaker's plea to have both of these qualities, however impossible that may be.

Sonnet XXIII - To the North Star. by Charlotte Smith


TO thy bright beams I turn my swimming eyes, Fair, favourite planet, which in happier days Saw my young hopes, ah, faithless hopes!--arise, And on my passion shed propitious rays. Now nightly wandering 'mid the tempests drear That howl the woods and rocky steeps among, I love to see thy sudden light appear Through the swift clouds--driven by the wind along: Or in the turbid water, rude and dark, O'er whose wild stream the gust of Winter raves, Thy trembling light with pleasure still I mark, Gleam in faint radiance on the foaming waves! So o'er my soul short rays of reason fly, Then fade:--and leave me to despair and die.

1. How do both poets write about a similar subject? Annotate both poems for the various techniques they have used. How are the poems similar? How are they different? Aim to write at least one side. Extension: Read and analyse one of Keatss most famous poems Ode To Autumn What are the key ideas about nature does he present in this poem?
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Upon Westminster Bridge


Sept. 3, 1802 Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth like a garment wear The beauty of the morning: silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky, All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. Never did sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour valley, rock, or hill; Ne'er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! the very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! William Wordsworth

Westminster Bridge as it appeared in 1808, only a few years after the writing of the poem

1. How can you tell that Wordsworth is excited about London? ( 8 marks) 2. In your opinion, what is the most interesting line in the poem? What techniques have been used to create the best image in your mind? ( 7 marks) 3. How does this view of London in 1802 compare with 2011? ( 10 marks)
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Over to you
Your task is to produce a series of poems describing nature as you see it and experience it. You might write about: Trees Wind Mountain Beach River New life Growth Flowers Birds (or another animal of your choice) The seasons (summer, spring, autumn, winter)

or anything that inspires you!

You could use the following techniques: Imagery: Simile Metaphor Personification Colour / Symbolism Alliteration: Assonance Consonance Sibilance Rhythm / Rhyme Enjambment / Punctuation Onomatopoeia Powerful words Adjectives Adverbs

Write in the sonnet form or any style that you want!

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