Friday, October 21, 2016

Lines Written in Early Spring by William Wordsworth

I heard a thousand blended notes,
While in a grove I sate reclined,
In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts
Bring sad thoughts to the mind.

To her fair works did Nature link
The human soul that through me ran;
And much it grieved my heart to think
What man has made of man.

Through primrose tufts, in that green bower,
The periwinkle trailed its wreaths;
And ’tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.

The birds around me hopped and played,
Their thoughts I cannot measure:—
But the least motion which they made
It seemed a thrill of pleasure.

The budding twigs spread out their fan,
To catch the breezy air;
And I must think, do all I can,
That there was pleasure there.

If this belief from heaven be sent,
If such be Nature’s holy plan,
Have I not reason to lament
What man has made of man?

Since I left the USA in early fall and found myself in New South Wales in early spring, I've been seasonally confused.  [Also, how the heck do you pack for a trip that takes one from fall to summer to spring to winter in the space of four and one-half weeks?  But, I digress....]  Naturally, shortly after stepping out of the Uber car in downtown Sydney, this poem was launched in my head.  It's a simple construction and rhyme and meter scale, but it has a sublime lyricism.

Also, and again as with the previous poem, Wordsworth explores the tension between the unnatural modern life and that cradled in pure nature.