Daffodils poem by William Wordsworth 

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Daffodils poem by William Wordsworth 

About the poet

William Wordsworth was born in 7 April 1770, at Cocker mouth, Lake District.. And he died in 1850. He is a romantic poet; he is called ‘Man of Nature’ because he shows nature as a father figure. Romantic poetry is a very subjective in nature, they simply express their ideas whether these relates to the mankind, nature or universe. Wordsworth says- ‘’whatever comes in the heart      just write it, it’s very true’’, they express their own experience naturally. In the poem I wandered lonely as a cloud ( Daffodils), the poet presents nature as a living figure as the flower daffodils can dance as if it has a life.

About the poem

William Wordsworth’s poem ‘Daffodils’ begins with the famous line “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud” which is the main title of the poem. It is one of the well known lyrical work by Wordsworth.

Background

The poem Daffodils I wandered lonely as a cloud, was written in 1804 by Wordsworth and it was first published in 1807 in his ‘Poems in two Volumes’ a collection of poetry. The poem got inspiration from an event when Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy came across a ‘long belt ’of daffodils in 15 April 1802 to know more about it visit Wikipedia

Title

Famous opening line of the poem “ I Wander ’d Lonely as a Cloud’ it was the original title of the poem .Though the title indicates the loneliness of the poet but the poem is all about the beauty of nature, how a host of golden flowers overjoyed the poet and leaves an everlasting impact on him. How this magnificence of flowers brings delight to the poet.

As the poem is all about the daffodils so some anthologist titled the poem as ‘Daffodils’ or ‘The Daffodils’ in their collection.

Main Idea /Theme

The main subject matter of this poem. (Daffodils) is the loveliness of nature. William Wordsworth is known as nature lover, and all his poetry directly or indirectly influenced by nature. When the poet met another well known romantic poet S.T. Coleridge in 1795 and made a great friendship. Wordsworth, Coleridge and Dorothy they discussed neo-classical things and tried how to come up and finally they published ‘Lyrical Ballad’ in1798 which is the beginning of romanticism , as the magnum opus in romanticism. The poem ‘Daffodils’ also represents the Romanticism in English literature. In this poem, he presents nature as a father figure. He thinks nature has a life. It can flutters like a bird and dance like human  so.

Structure

The structure of the poem daffodils refers how the poet introduces it to the reader such as the line stanza length format of the poem. It is a lyrical poem it is really a very simple in form and language. The poem is written in 4 stanzas comprising six lines in each which makes the whole poem Twenty four lines. The rhyme design of the poem is A,B,C,C. The poem is rich in its use of figure of speech.

Thus , it is a great example of lyrical poem that is a spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings; which the poet himself define a poetry should be. So here, the poet expresses his own personal feelings so it is a highly subjective poem, one of the important characteristics of romanticism.

Figure of Speech/ literary devices

In this poem the poet uses many comparison, exaggerations which makes the poem fruitful. Some of the must know figure of speech is discussed below-

1.Simile:

It is a figure of speech, where two things which compared by using as’ or like’. In this poem the poet compares himself to a lonely cloud by saying that- “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud

2.Personification:

In this figure of speech, non- living things or objects presents in such a way as if it were a living being. Line no. 6. “Fluttering and dancing in the breeze”. The flowers are fluttering and dancing so beautifully as if birds flutter and human dancing.

3.Hyperbole

 It is an important poetic device that uses extreme exaggeration to a statement or show emphasis. In line no eleven “Ten thousand saw I at a glance”. Here the poet uses exaggeration that he never sees so many daffodils at a glance so he was amazed and overjoyed.

Poem

daffodils poem full

Daffodils: Explanation of the poem

Now we are going to analysis the poem I wandered lonely as a cloud (Daffodils) line by line –

Stanza: 1

“I wandered lonely as a cloud

“That floats on high o’er vales and hills”

When….. daffodils,

Beside the lake, beneath the trees,

Fluttering and dancing in the breeze”

The poet was nomadic aimlessly just like the cloud which floats over the villages and hills. And all of a unexpected  way he sees a host of a golden daffodils. Which are fluttering and dancing in the gentle breeze. Daffodils under the trees beside the lake. This stanza gives a beautiful picture of the ambience such as the water air, the daffodils under tree, blowing gentle air and the flowers are dance in the air. so it gives a pleasant sight.

The poet emphasizes by using the word host’ and crowed to mean that he saw a large area with huge daffodils. The poet uses simile a comparison and personification as he compare himself  by to a cloud which is a lonely and by says that the flowers are fluttering and dancing in the air like living birds and human beings.

Stanza :2

“Continuous as the stars that shine

And twinkle on the milky  way,

They stretch ‘ d  in never-ending line

Along the margin of a bay:

Ten thousand  saw at a glance

Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.”

Here the poet again compares daffodils to the stars which are shining and twinkling on the sky just like the stars in the galaxy like Milky Way. This link implicate that the flowers are as heavenly as the bright stars.

Daffodils are grown on the region of the lake. The line of the flowers is so long as if it has no ending. the poet sees ten thousand daffodils at once, here he  uses hyperbole ( exaggeration ) by saying ‘ten thousand’ to mean that he never sees so many daffodils at glance which are dancing and tossing their heads in the air so beautifully, it seems it has  alive. So the poet becomes overjoyed. The poet uses the phrase’ continuous’ and ‘never-ending line’ this directly implies that it has an everlasting impact on him.

Stanza: 3

“The waves beside them danced, but them

Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:

A poet could not but be gay

In such a jocund company!

I gazed-and gazed –but little thought

“What wealth the show to me had brought.”

The lake’s water also dancing and looking joyous but the daffodils outshine the lively waves of the lake in their happiness. So the poet could not do anything being so happy in such a beautiful company. He was so amazed with this joyful company that he was staring again and again. And he did not realize what’ wealth ‘the scene would bring to him.

Stanza 4:

“In vacant or in pensive mood,

They flash upon that inward eye

Which is the bliss of solitude?

And then my heart with pleasure fills

And start dancing with the daffodils.”

In this last stanza the poet says the importance of this beautiful scenery in his life. When the poet feel vacant or thoughtful temper in his bed, those beautiful memory of the daffodils comes in his imagination and gives gladness. It becomes an everlasting memory for the poet. Thus, at any time the poet feels lonely or barrenness those sweet memory of the daffodils comes in his imagination and fill his heart with joy and opens dancing with the dancing flowers. Which the poet call “bliss of solitude”

 

Daffodils poem question answer

Practice session
  1. Mention the correct option in each of the following:
  2. a) The poet compares himself to-
  1. A piece of lonely cloud
  2.  host of golden daffodils
  3. A lake
  4. The trees

2.While wandering alone the poet saw-

  1. A crowd of people
  2. Clouds floating over vales and hills
  3.  host of golden daffodils
  4. A lake
  1. The poet compares daffodils to-
  1.  lonely cloud
  2.  lake
  3. The stars in the milky way
  4. A bay

 

  1. The ‘jocund company’ referred to is the company of-
  1.   Daffodils
  2. Sparkling waves of the lake
  3. The dancing daffodils and the waves of the lake
  4. Stars on the milky way
  1. The inward eye of the poet is the poet’s
  1. Vacant mood
  2. Thoughtful mood
  3. Imagination
  4. Bliss of solitude

Answers:

 

  1. a ) A piece of lonely cloud
  2. c)  Host of golden daffodils
  3. c)The stars in the milky way
  4. c) Dancing daffodils and the waves of the lake
  5. c) Imagination

 

 

 

 

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