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The element of nature ranges greatly, from the physical grandeur of mountains to the reverence of tiny creatures in the poems Afterwards, Rising Five and "Wild Swans at Coole".

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Introduction

Essay on how 3 poems illustrate how poets have illustrated nature. Maria Sun The element of nature ranges greatly, from the physical grandeur of mountains to the reverence of tiny creatures. In the poems Afterwards, Rising Five and "Wild Swans at Coole", nature is used as a symbol to emphasise the importance of slowing down and appreciating beauty of it and to illustrate it's vivid energy compared to temporary mundane human lives. In the poem Afterwards, Thomas Hardy is anticipating his own death and uses his own feelings and observations of nature as a contrast against his mortality. He identifies himself with the frail, weak, insect like creatures who are "innocent" but like he are doomed to death. In Stanza Three, Hardy observes a hedgehog that "travels furtively over the lawn". Hardy himself, feels out of place with his wild ideas in an orderly community like the hedgehog, a wild animal misplaced in a structured lawn that humans have recultivated. ...read more.

Middle

Natural imagery in the first three lines of the first stanza such as "trees in their autumn beauty" and the "October twilight" adds heartfelt statements of the surroundings before descriptions of the swans. The poem, set in autumn, a time of dryness and approaching winter, has also been used by the poet as a metaphor for his old age and oncoming death. The "dry" "woodland paths" and "still sky" offers contrast with the movement of the water, where the action of the poetry will be taking place and the swans are focused. The poet is envious of the swans "brimming" with a life that he no longer feels. He struggles to count them as they "mount" and "scatter" in "great broken wings" reflecting the power of their movement and their unwillingness to be categorised by man. In the first four stanzas the swans take to the "still sky" with a vigour and liberty to "wander where they will" that the poet does not possess. ...read more.

Conclusion

The boy's hair "unclicks" like a coiled spring, expanding and growing, linking with the idea of growth and seasons in the second stanza when plosives such as "unbuttoned buds" as they "bubbled and doubled" further emphasises the idea of growth. In the second stanza the boy is compared to the "season after blossoming" but "before the forming of fruit", this means that the boy is in between stages in his life, having already been born but is still forming and not yet ripe, or having children of his own. In the final stanza the rush of future generations overtaking the old is compared to "new buds" or new generation, pushing "the old leaves" linking back to the imagery of spring in the second stanza. The three poems have all used comparisons of nature to humans. Nature is a powerful symbol to use as it offers a board canvas to work with, and relies on the reader's own personal opinion and connotations to be effective. ...read more.

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