M.H. Abrams wrote, "The Romantic period was eminently an age obsessed with fact of violent change" ("Revolution" 659). And Percy Shelley is often thought of as the quintessential Romantic poet (Appelbaum x). The "Ode to the West Wind" expresses perfectly the aims and views of the Romantic period.
Shelley's poem expresses the yearning for Genius. In the Romantic era, it was common to associate genius with an attendant spirit or force of nature from which the genius came; the Romantics perceived the artist as a vessel through which the genius flows. For instance, in "A Defence of Poetry," Shelley says that poets are
the hierophants of an unapprehended inspiration, the mirrors of
the gigantic shadows which futurity casts upon the present . . .
In "Ode to the West Wind," Shelley implores the West Wind, a powerful force of nature that Shelley identifies with his rapidly-changing reality, to "lift me as a wave, a leaf, a cloud!" He also expresses his almost-melancholy wish that he could be as
I were in my boyhood, and could be
The comrade of thy wanderings over Heaven (Ode 815)
"Ode to the West Wind" invokes the attendant spirit from which Genius comes to grant Creativity also. "If I were a dead leaf thou mightest bear," he pleads, "If I were a swift cloud to fly with thee" (Ode 815). In the fifth section, he begs the West Wind (which he identifies with himself early in the section) to
Scatter, as from an unextinguished hearth,
Ashes and sparks, my words among mankind! (Ode 815)
Again, Shelley is asking the force that provides inspiration to act through him.
"Ode to the West Wind" also expresses the hungering f...
... middle of paper ...
...sires for the world, and believes could be possible. Shelley's poem is his attempt to let the West Wind work through him.
Works Cited and Consulted:
Appelbaum, Stanley. Introduction to English Romantic Poetry: An Anthology. Mineola, New York: Dover, 1996. iii-xii
"Percy Bysshe Shelley." Norton Anthology: World Masterpieces, Volume Two. Ed. Maynard Mack. New York: Norton, 1995. p. 811-812.
"Revolution and Romanticism in Europe and America." Norton Anthology: World Masterpieces, Volume Two. Ed. Maynard Mack. New York: Norton, 1995. p. 657-664.
Shelley, Percy Bysshe. "A Defence of Poetry." Norton Anthology: World Masterpieces, Volume Two. Ed. Maynard Mack. New York: Norton, 1995. p. 816-817
Shelley, Percy Bysshe. "Ode to the West Wind." Norton Anthology: World Masterpieces, Volume Two. Ed. Maynard Mack. New York: Norton, 1995. p. 814-815.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Ode to the West Wind In his writings, Percy Shelley strays away from neoclassical writing and writes some of the greatest Romantic Literature of his time. Using this new style of writing he uses metaphors, especially negative ones to further the message he’s trying to convey and to make to poem more readable and draws on the wind from the poem for inspiration in an unconventional way. 0 Percy Shelley was born in 1792. He studied at Oxford, where he was later kicked out for writing an insulting pamphlet about Atheism that was directed towards the people in charge.... [tags: Romanticism, John Keats, Mary Shelley, Literature]
1377 words (3.9 pages)
- Daniel Willey once said that “I believe that the best advocates of a certain issue are the ones that fully understand both sides” (Quotes About Sides). (http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/sides) Even though he was discussing politics at the time, this statement holds true for many things. In the same way one needs to see both sides of a coin to fully understand it, sometimes a person has to look outside of one thing in order to find its true meaning. By reading both Percy Bysshe Shelley’s “Ode to the West Wind” and an excerpt from George Gordon, Lord Byron’s Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, Canto IV the reader can gain a better understanding of each work as well as a more thorough grasp of Roman... [tags: Romanticism, Poetry, Mary Shelley]
1144 words (3.3 pages)
- Romanticism was a revolutionary movement which began in English Literature (mainly poetry) around the Eighteenth Century in Western Europe and gained height during the times of the Industrial Revolution. Wordsworth, Byron, Shelley, Keats, Coleridge and Blake were regarded as the ‘Big Six’ of Romanticism. In ‘Tintern Abbey’ by William Wordsworth, ‘Frost at Midnight’ by Samuel Coleridge and ‘ Ode to the West Wind’ by Percy Shelley, we see clearly that nature is the central trigger for the poet’s imagination to take wings and to help each poet to seriously explore his inner world in a meditative manner; the treatment and responses to nature are also similar, despite some individual differences.... [tags: English Literature]
2048 words (5.9 pages)
- Percy Shelley indited "Ozymandias" in competition with his friend, Horace Smith, who also composed a sonnet concerning the ruined statue. Shelley's was published in the "The Examiner by Hunt in January 1818"1. Although "Ozymandias" detached style differs from the exalted tone of most of Shelley's oeuvre, it pleased Desmond King-Hele enough for him to honour it with a comparison to Shakespeare's poetry: "Few of Shelley's sonnets can bear comparison with Shakespeare's, but in 'Ozymandias' he successfully challenges the master on his favourite ground, the ravages of time."2 In this essay I hope to illustrate how the "music" of "Ozymandias" is integral to conveying its meaning.... [tags: sonnete, romanticism]
1488 words (4.3 pages)
- Jordyn Allen 7 May 2015 British Literature Final Percy Shelley & The Sublime/Beautiful: Percy Shelley is an author of the Romantic era whom which best depicts the relationship and connectivity of the two most adverse elements represented as a core to the Romantic intellect: the sublime and the beautiful.Percey Shelley expresses the junction of these two elements through the intellect and imagination of the human mind, as well as through nature and its fundamentals. This phenomenon may be most recognizable within the works of Mont Blanc, Hymn to Intellectual Beauty, and Ode to a West Wind.... [tags: Romanticism, Samuel Taylor Coleridge]
1126 words (3.2 pages)
- Romanticism, Romanticism, in a way, was a reaction against rigid Classicism, Rationalism, and Deism of the eighteenth century. Strongest in application between 1800 and 1850, the Romantic Movement differed from country to country and from romanticist to romanticist. Because it emphasized change it was an atmosphere in which events occurred and came to affect not only the way humans thought and expressed them, but also the way they lived socially and politically (Abrams, M.H. Pg. 13). “Romanticism emphasized the individual, the subjective, the irrational, the imaginative, the personal, the spontaneous, the emotional, the visionary, and the transcendental,” (Thompson, E.P.... [tags: Romantic Movement Essays]
1682 words (4.8 pages)
- Have you ever read a 19th century poem and been bored to tears. They had a tendency to drone on and leave you feeling completely bewildered. That is until a man named William Wordsworth decided to breathe soul into the art of poetry. William Wordsworth was an influential English Romantic poet who helped launch the Romantic Era in literature. He believed that poetry should be more than just a collection of words, but a divine emotional experience. It should be rich, and full of imagination. His poem, “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud,” is the quite possibly the pinnacle of his feelings, and a spark of inspiration to two other Romantic poets, Percy Shelley and Lord George Gordon Byron.... [tags: Romanticism, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Mary Shelley]
1032 words (2.9 pages)
- Romanticism, an intellectual and cultural movement during the late 18th to 19th century that followed the Age of Enlightenment, could be described as a rebellion against the social and political norms of the aristocratic society. Merriam-Webster defines Romanticism as “a literary, artistic, and philosophical movement originating in the 18th century, characterized chiefly by a reaction against neoclassicism and an emphasis on the imagination and emotions (Romanticism)”. Historians oftentimes have reflected upon the conscious rejection of conventional societal manners as a characteristic of young poets (Spielvogel 657).... [tags: Literary Analysis]
1676 words (4.8 pages)
- An Analysis of Ode to the West Wind Shelley's "Ode to the West Wind" appears more complex at first than it really is because the poem is structured much like a long, complex sentence in which the main clause does not appear until the last of five fourteen line sections. The poem's main idea is held in suspension for 56 lines before the reader sees exactly what Shelley is saying to the west wind, and why he's saying it. In the first four sections Shelley addresses the west wind in three different ways, each one evoking the wind's power and beauty.... [tags: Ode to the West Wind Essays]
1369 words (3.9 pages)
Ode to the West Wind by Percy Bysshe Shelley and Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey by Wordsworth
- "Ode to the West Wind" by Percy Bysshe Shelley and "Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey" by Wordsworth The two chosen pieces both have a dominant theme of nature. Shelley, in his poem 'Ode to the West Wind,'; uses poignant tone, while using personification and imagery to unravel his theme of nature. While Wordsworth's '...Tintern Abbey'; contains a governing theme of nature, Wordsworth uses first person narration, illusive imagery, as well as an amiable tone to avow his connection to nature.... [tags: Shelley Wordsworth Ode Tintern Essays]
705 words (2 pages)
- Comparing The Corner Residents and Dostoevsky’s Underground Man
- Comparing the Anti-Social Plays of Cyrano de Bergerac and Night of the Iguana
- An Analysis of Coleridge's Kubla Kahn
- Analysis of The Inquisitor's Argument in Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov
- King Lear's Folly in Shakespeare's King Lear
- Thomas More's Utopia as a Social Model