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Comparative Essay on Romantic Poetry - In London, September 1802 vs. The World Is Too Much With Us Late and Soon - Wordsworth

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Introduction

Comparative Essay on Romantic Poetry In London, September 1802 vs. The World Is Too Much With Us Late and Soon Wordsworth's poems initiated the Romantic era by emphasizing feeling, instinct, and pleasure above formality and mannerism. More than any poet before him, Wordsworth gave expression to unformed human emotion; his lyric "Strange fits of passion have I known," in which the speaker describes an inexplicable fantasy he once had that his lover was dead, could not have been written by any previous poet. The message that these poems sent across may be interpreted as being cynical and nostalgic towards the people, nation and the era in which the author lives. In The World is Too Much, the speaker angrily accuses the modern age of having lost its connection to nature and to everything meaningful: "Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers: / Little we see in Nature that is ours; / We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!" ...read more.

Middle

This is supported with excerpts like "We must run glittering like a brook" and "No grandeur now in nature or a book" show the author's view that there is potential for society and that is has the ability to change. This is quite contrary to the pessimistic outlook of The World is Too Much. The structure of both these poems is that of an Italian sonnet much like many other famous sonnets Wordsworth wrote in the early 1800s. Sonnets are fourteen-line poetic inventions written in iambic pentameter. An Italian or Petrarchan sonnet is divided into two parts, an octave (the first eight lines of the poem) and a sestet (the final six lines). The rhyme scheme of a Petrarchan sonnet is somewhat variable; in this case, both of the octaves follow the rhyme scheme of ABBAABBA, and the sestets follows a rhyme scheme of BCBCBC. The octave in these sonnets as in many others poses the question, while the sestet forms the conclusion or answers, comments upon, or criticizes the octave. ...read more.

Conclusion

Both of these poems use very similar literary features found quite typically in Wordsworth's poetry. Literary features found in both are Simile "run glittering like a Brook" is stated in London while, "And are gathered up like sleeping flowers" is said in The World is too much with us. Both of these similes are focused around comparing man to nature. The use of simile in London vs. World is that simile is used to help rather than to describe the general public in a negative way. This carries on throughout the sonnets and is seen with literary features such as diction. The choice of words in the World vs. London has a far harsher sound to them. The euphonic words in London like, "glittering, homely beauty, and innocence" all of these words depict the image of beauty quite clearly. This supports inferences of the author's view being of potential. The diction in World does not compare to that which is developed in London. The use of very negative words throughout the entire poem (including the sestet) creates a very negative message. Words that support this are (Lay waste, Getting, Spending, Pagan, and Forlorn" ...read more.

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