Wordsworth's ‘Lines written in Early Spring’

‘Lines written in Early Spring’ - the poem

I heard a thousand blended notes,
While in a grove I sate reclined,
In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts
Bring sad thoughts to the mind.
To her fair works did Nature link
The human soul that through me ran;
And much it grieved my heart to think
What man has made of man.
Through primrose tufts, in that green bower,
The periwinkle trailed its wreaths;
And 'tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.
The birds around me hopped and played,
Their thoughts I cannot measure:--
But the least motion which they made
It seemed a thrill of pleasure.
The budding twigs spread out their fan,
To catch the breezy air;
And I must think, do all I can,
That there was pleasure there.
If this belief from heaven be sent,
If such be Nature's holy plan,
Have I not reason to lament
What man has made of man?

All the poems of Wordsworth revolve around Nature. After he met Coleridge they jointly published a collection of poems entitled ‘Lyrical Ballads’, which marked the beginning of a new kind of poetry. The present poem ‘Lines written in Early Spring’ appeared for the first time in ‘Lyrical Ballads’.
The poem has been written by the poet in a thoughtful mood. The poet William Wordsworth has himself expressed the view that he was sitting by the side of a stream when he composed this poem. The poet in this poem contrasts the happiness of the objects of Nature with the unhappiness experienced by man. He expressed sorrow that man has finished the scope of his own happiness by ignoring Nature.
In the first stanza, the poet describes the experience of being in the company of Nature. He says that while he was sitting under the shade of a group of trees in a relaxing mood, he heard a medley of music. At that time he was in a very cheerful mood, a time when happy thoughts came to his mind. But soon some sad thoughts followed.
The poet says that the beautiful sights of nature served as a bridge between the inner conscience/soul of man and God. But the poet’s heart is pained to think of the treatment given to man by his fellow human beings. Thus, the poet wants to convey the idea that man suffers because of his drifting away from Nature.
In the next stanza, the poet elaborates the types of flowers growing at that place. He says that there were bunches of primrose (rose growing in that shady haunt). A blue creeper flower, periwinkle was curled around the primrose. The poet believed that in such a pleasant atmosphere every flower enjoyed the fragrant air there.
The poet then, talking about the birds there, says that they were playing and moving here and there. The poet could not judge their thoughts but felt that even their smallest movement portrayed/displayed the blissful mood they were in.
There were growing branches of trees which seemed to be spreading themselves out to enjoy the pleasant breeze. The poet says that, however, hard he may try he can only think that there was only joy and happiness there.
In the last two stanzas, the poet in conclusion gives two suppositions: that his belief of joy being present there (the shady haunt) is divine; and that the communion of man with nature is the plan of God (Nature). If these two are true then he definitely has a reason to mourn over the man’s fate brought on him as a result of living with his fellow human beings away from nature.
“Have I not reason to lament
What Man has made of Man?”
Hence, in this poem the poet wants that there should be a perfect harmony between man and nature. But then the poet expresses sadness over the fact man has thoughtlessly destroyed his own peace of mind and joy of life.


Anonymous said...

very well explained!

This is an amazing example of a Romantic poem.

It's a shame you didn't use lit devices to support you're stance.
But nice work nonetheless.

risingbluefalcon said...

Very well explained!

This is an amazing example of a Romantic poem.

It's a shame you didn't use lit devices to support you're stance.
But nice work nonetheless.

Amritbir Kaur said...

Thanks for your suggestions. Any advice is always welcome.

Anonymous said...

a very nice summary.....
it helped me a lot in my project...


Anonymous said...

Excellent Summary! Really helped me get a better understanding of Wordsworth's work

SoniaDnc said...

How I can explain the society of the time beginning with this poem?

Abu Basir said...

It has helped a lot in my assignments. Thanks a lot.


nicely explained, thanks amritbir,it helpled me in my assignments.

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