Wordsworth takes readers on a reminiscent journey in "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" reflecting upon visions of nature. The figurative language and diction used elucidate the poet's response to nature. Wordsworth uses each stanza to share his experience in nature through the image of a dance that culminates in the poet's emotional response.
Wordsworth opens with reference to himself through simile as a part of the natural landscape, "I wandered lonely as a cloud / That floats on high" (Wordsworth, Line 1). The diction used in the opening simile puts the reader in the poet's state of mind. A cloud is a lightweight, free-flowing image. Cloud paired with the action "floats", lets the reader experience the tranquility and lightheartedness the author feels in the presence of nature. "Lonely" in this verse does not carry a negative connotation; one can read this line as peaceful solitude as opposed to loneliness. Wordsworth observes that he is not alone, viewing "A host, of golden daffodils" (4). Wordsworth is using a metaphor to compare the daffodils to a crowd of people or a host of angels. The words "golden" and "host" create a visual image of the flowers' petals shimmering like golden halos. The imagery is one of light in a visual and emotional sense, which will be repeated in various forms in future stanzas. The poet proceeds to give the natural landscape humanistic qualities, describing the flowers as .".. dancing in the breeze" (6). The introduction of the daffodils' dancing personifies the flowers and creates a figurative relationship that illustrates the poet's synthesis with nature. The daffodils are also personified as "fluttering" (6), the diction makes the lines...
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...ength of Wordsworth's thoughts and memories as very bright and powerful. The poem concludes with the imagery of the poet in action with nature as he ."..dances with the daffodils" (24). Wordsworth uses this final image of him dancing with the daffodils to further personify the flower and emphasize his connection to nature.
Through careful diction and figurative language, Wordsworth was able to bring to life images of nature. This poem contains glimpses of recollections from the poet's memory and the exquisite effect the outside world has upon him. Wordsworth comprehends the beauty and importance after the experience and is able to reconstruct the event for the reader.
Wordsworth, William. "I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud." The Bedford
Introduction to Literature. Ed. Michael Meyer. 6th ed. Boston:
Bedford/St. Martin's, 2002. 1191.
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