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A comparison of Wordsworth's 'I wandered lonely as a cloud' and Clarkes 'Miracle on Saint David's Day'.

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Introduction

A comparison of Wordsworth's 'Iwandered lonely as a cloud' and Clarkes 'Miracle on Saint David's Day'. The title 'I wandered lonely as a cloud,' says a lot about the poem, especially as it is also the first line. It immediately starts off the poem with a sense of inner disharmony, shown by the words 'wandered', 'lonely' and 'cloud'. 'Wandered' gives the impression of being purposeless and 'lonely' shows that he longs for some sort of relationship. The word 'cloud' also relates to the loneliness and distance between him and civilisation. It could also mean that the poet is comfortable with his loneliness and wandering, just as a cloud seems comfortable alone. It also starts off a comparison between man and nature, an idea illustrated throughout both poems. The title of the second poem 'miracle on Saint David's day' starts straight off with a religious theme. Though this is not particularly shown through either poem, the fact a 'miracle' is a revelation is. In the first poem it is shown by the words 'when all at once' and shown in the second poem by 'he is suddenly staring'. ...read more.

Middle

It also seems that because he is so passionate he exaggerates every fact showing his enthusiasm. In the second poem the beautiful rhythmatic group of words is stopped abruptly with the technicality of the word 'schizophrenic'. Going back to the welsh culture, the words 'as many buckets of coal,' seems ironic as the welsh coal industry closed down, leaving no more coal. In poem 2 the fact that the mental patients feel trapped and 'caged' reflects Wordsworth's agony of loneliness. In the first poem Wordsworth uses old fashioned language, 'gay' and 'jocund'. In both poems they seem to focus on the wealth of memories and natural happiness and less concerned with currency. In Clarke's poem all the patients seem to be extremes, one absent, one absorbed. The mental patients in her poem seem to be like cattle, led to where there supposed to be, then a revelation happens which leads to a rebel among the flock. This might symbolise the mans grasp on sanity. As he is a labouring man the fact he doesn't speak might be a sign of stupidity, but that is stricken. When he repeats the poem, it reminds me of the phrase, 'just because I don't, doesn't mean I can't'. ...read more.

Conclusion

Again back to welsh culture, Clarke's poem seems to go into the music of speech and the welsh cultural identity is centred around music and dancing, making his words a performance. It seems that Clarke has a view that the welsh cultural voice is being lost and they need to regain it. This is shown by the last line of the poem, 'and the daffodils are flame'. The 'flame; is the revolution and that's what Clarke's edging towards. They need to break free from the chains of money and voice there opinions on the world. It seems although both poems are written in a different time and style they both have a strong theme that money does not create happiness, and mostly leads to misery. Clarkes poem was written in response to wordsworths one and has merely built on the idea from a different perspective. Wordsworth seems to have been written in a fluent, nursery rhyme style while as clarkes style seems to be focusing on a hard, difficult and shocking structure. Its as if Clarke is trying to voice wordsworths ideas, but make them more eventful. Altogether it seems that the poems are both evaluating the same ideas but interperating them in different styles. Anne-Marie Waterworth 10df ...read more.

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