Sunday, June 23, 2013

Wordsworth - Poetry

The next entry in the poetry read through is from William Wordsworth, a wonderful name for a man who writes!  This sonnet is titled 'The World is Too Much with Us'.

The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
The Sea that bares her bosm to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
It moves us not. - Great God! I'd rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.

The message is clear enough.  We have become too worldly and lost touch with nature.  That's a bad bargain and we're missing out on some choice delights.  Wordsworth would like to renounce it all and live a more primitive life if it would let him be in touch with the old spirits.  I'm somewhat sympathetic to this idea, but while I'd like to vacation in the primitive, I wouldn't want to live there.
How about poetic beauty?  The rhyme scheme doesn't thrill me.  The A,B,B,A pattern makes rythym difficult.  There isn't a phrase that really gets me in this.  Hmmm.  I can respect the work that goes into a sonnet but this one doesn't sing for me.

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