William Wordsworth's Expostulation and Reply and Strange Fits of Passion Have I Known

William Wordsworth's Expostulation and Reply and Strange Fits of Passion Have I Known

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William Wordsworth's Expostulation and Reply and Strange Fits of Passion Have I Known

William Wordsworth is well known for his great works of poetry,
spawned from his unique idea of how good poetry should be written.
Wordsworth was a firm believer in using simple language, and more
importantly emphasized the need to have a reflective component to his
poetry. As a result of his writing poetry in the Romantic era,
elements such as nature and spirituality have a more profound effect
on the poem. In two of his own poems, “Expostulation and Reply” and
“Strange fits of passion have I known,” Wordsworth demonstrates the
use of nature and spirituality combined with his more reflective style
to create stunning poetry. Although no two poem can entirely capture
his writing style, these two are as representative as possible,
they’re alike in that they both use elements of nature and
spirituality, but dissimilar because they create different
experiences.

Nature is a theme prevalent in many varieties of poetry. Many
Romantic poets, including Coleridge and Keats used nature, but in a
drastically different fashion than Wordsworth. When Coleridge and
Keats used nature in their poetry, it was often portrayed as this
destructive horrible force that should be avoided. They would both
often juxtapose a harsh natural environment such as a stormy winter as
in Keats’ “The Eve of St. Agnes” with a warm, safe, and inviting
interior. Wordsworth shows nature in a much more positive light, and
uses it to enhance the mood of his poetry. From the fourth stanza of
“Expostulation and Reply” we see “One morning thus, by Esthwaite lake,
/When life was sw...


... middle of paper ...


...ocked that he’s feeling these strange emotions and he’s trying
to determine from where they originate. I’d say the perhaps too
obvious answer of love. But the speaker’s genuine confusion of his
own emotions suggests the possibility that it’s more than that. Is it
paranoia, madness even? While we may never know the answer, that
personal journey is most certainly one that sticks with the reader in
their own spiritual world.

Romantic poets are grouped together by a fairly similar style of
poetry and by the time in which they lived. William Wordsworth stuck
out even then with his distinctive style using self reflection and his
portrayal of nature. While “Expostulation and Reply” and “Strange
fits of passion have I known” both possess these aspects, they are set
apart from one another in their emotional experiences.

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