The poem is divided into five stanzas, each fourteen lines with a couplet at its end, suspiciously resembling a sonnet. In the first of these stanzas, Shelley begins his ode describing the power and influence of the west wind to bring about death. The sheer control of the wind is represented in the ode’s form. The compactness of the stanza couplet sequences gives each part of Shelley’s work a compactness and solidarity (Ahn). Through the use of simile and imagery, he gives the power of the wind a sinister feeling when he compares the leaves to “ghosts from an enchanter fleeing,” and again with the phrase “chariotest to their dark wintry bed.” To understand Shelley’s dark tone, a search into the poems background shows that at the time the ode was pinned, he was recovering from the death of his son William and negative reviews of his latest works (Ahn).
More importantly, this stanza introduces the important idea that the wind has dual natures, one being destruction and the other in c...
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...tice (Napierkowski and Ruby 163). However, seasons of life do not come and go as one pleases. Although Shelley never witnessed the magnitude of impact his poetry made, it cannot be denied that he was indeed one of the most important Romantic poets.
Ahn, Jinny. "Percy B. Shelley (1792-1822) and 'The Ode to the West Wind'." Ashes Sparks & Hypertext. Phillipson/ UC Berkeley , June 2003. Web. 2 Apr. 2014.
Fogle, Richard H. "The Imaginal Design of Shelley's "Ode to the West Wind"." JSTOR. John Hopkins University Press, 10 Oct. 2012. Web. 2 Apr. 2014.
Mooney, Patrick. "Temporal Dislocations and Visions of Interpretation in Shelley's "Ode to the West Wind"." Patrick Brian Mooney. Ed. Patrick Mooney. N.p., 11 Mar. 2014. Web. 2 Apr. 2014.
Napierkowski, Marie Rose, and Mary Ruby. Poetry for Students. 2nd Vol. Detroit: Gale, 2007. 161-176. Web.
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