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Ode To The West Wind Analysis



Author: poem of Percy Bysshe Shelley Type: poem Views: 132


I

O wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn's being,
Thou, from whose unseen presence the leaves dead
Are driven, like ghosts from an enchanter fleeing,

Yellow, and black, and pale, and hectic red,
Pestilence-stricken multitudes: 0 thou,
Who chariotest to their dark wintry bed

The wingèd seeds, where they lie cold and low,
Each like a corpse within its grave,until
Thine azure sister of the Spring shall blow

Her clarion o'er the dreaming earth, and fill
(Driving sweet buds like flocks to feed in air)
With living hues and odours plain and hill:

Wild Spirit, which art moving everywhere;
Destroyer and Preserver; hear, O hear!


II

Thou on whose stream, 'mid the steep sky's commotion,
Loose clouds like Earth's decaying leaves are shed,
Shook from the tangled boughs of Heaven and Ocean,

Angels of rain and lightning: there are spread
On the blue surface of thine airy surge,
Like the bright hair uplifted from the head

Of some fierce Maenad, even from the dim verge
Of the horizon to the zenith's height,
The locks of the approaching storm. Thou dirge

Of the dying year, to which this closing night
Will be the dome of a vast sepulchre
Vaulted with all thy congregated might

Of vapours, from whose solid atmosphere
Black rain, and fire, and hail will burst: O hear!


III

Thou who didst waken from his summer dreams
The blue Mediterranean, where he lay,
Lulled by the coil of his crystalline streams,

Beside a pumice isle in Baiae's bay,
And saw in sleep old palaces and towers
Quivering within the wave's intenser day,

All overgrown with azure moss and flowers
So sweet, the sense faints picturing them! Thou
For whose path the Atlantic's level powers

Cleave themselves into chasms, while far below
The sea-blooms and the oozy woods which wear
The sapless foliage of the ocean, know

Thy voice, and suddenly grow grey with fear,
And tremble and despoil themselves: O hear!


IV

If I were a dead leaf thou mightest bear;
If I were a swift cloud to fly with thee;
A wave to pant beneath thy power, and share

The impulse of thy strength, only less free
Than thou, O Uncontrollable! If even
I were as in my boyhood, and could be

The comrade of thy wanderings over Heaven,
As then, when to outstrip thy skiey speed
Scarce seemed a vision; I would ne'er have striven

As thus with thee in prayer in my sore need.
Oh! lift me as a wave, a leaf, a cloud!
I fall upon the thorns of life! I bleed!

A heavy weight of hours has chained and bowed
One too like thee: tameless, and swift, and proud.


V

Make me thy lyre, even as the forest is:
What if my leaves are falling like its own!
The tumult of thy mighty harmonies

Will take from both a deep, autumnal tone,
Sweet though in sadness. Be thou, Spirit fierce,
My spirit! Be thou me, impetuous one!

Drive my dead thoughts over the universe
Like withered leaves to quicken a new birth!
And, by the incantation of this verse,

Scatter, as from an unextinguished hearth
Ashes and sparks, my words among mankind!
Be through my lips to unawakened Earth

The trumpet of a prophecy! O Wind,
If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?              

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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||




.: :.

i can\'t understand the meaning of the poem but i guess it\'s nice.. i\'ll try to go over with it again

| Posted on 2011-08-22 | by a guest


.: :.

this poem is very beatiful in nature..which shows realism imagnery.which reflects the social factors of that age..

| Posted on 2011-03-17 | by a guest


.: :.

this poem is a very beautiful and melancholic poem. It is truly meaningful and realistic.

| Posted on 2010-09-27 | by a guest


.: :.

Despite the messages previously - this is not a discourse on Apollo. He was a staunch Aethiest and was actually kicked out of University for publishing a pamphlet about the subject. The poem is more of a musing on the nature of writing itself. Like most Romantic poets (or certainly the younger ones ), he saw his poetry as essential and transcendental. This poem explains how the west wind (essentially a form of muse), breathes new life into poetic works. He is essentially suggesting that this is what he poetry is doing to the poetic world - hence the turn in section V. He uses some beautiful imagery though and does make a few religious references (more to Hindu gods than Apollow), but this is part of his explanation of their failings, than as an actual musing upon their worth.

| Posted on 2010-04-08 | by a guest


.: :.

this poem shows revolutionary thought processes, highlighted within the romantic genre. teh wind is pictured as a method of spreading his revolutionary out look, from the country he has been banished from

| Posted on 2010-03-29 | by a guest


.: :.

.: Characterising Apollo :.
This poem may be personifying the god Apollo as the West Wind, as Apollo is identified by his characteristic ARROWS OF PESTILENCE AND DISEASE and is well-known to be a master of playing the LYRE.
In the poem, Shelley refers to "Pestilence-stricken multitudes" in Stanza 1 and demands, in Stanza 5, that the West Wind "Make me(him) thy lyre". These similarities are striking, but as most of the critics may not be familiar with both 'The Ode to the West Wind' and to Apollo's attributes, this information has, to my knowledge, been completely overlooked.
This is a personal outlook, but is a highly probable theory that should be accepted by literary experts.
harshit
.

| Posted on 2009-02-15 | by a guest


.: :.

this is an excellent poem which has lots of symbolism in it and has conveyed the flow of happiness and grief in terms of progression of different seasons

| Posted on 2008-11-07 | by a guest


.: :.

The poem has very meaningful themes as it talks about the living and dead memories of an individual. In terms of season changes he adds the the person's feelings towards life.

| Posted on 2008-11-02 | by a guest


.: hmmm :.

The poet's peice is rythmic.he uses an apostrophe in the poem.
the poet describes the leaves as ghosts being driven away from a magician.
the poem is a good peice on the whole.

| Posted on 2008-04-12 | by a guest


.: Apollo :.

This poem is very beautiful. For many years we have read about the Greek Gods, Apollo being one of them. This poem is a wonderful description of this God.

| Posted on 2008-04-07 | by a guest


.: hmmmm... :.

This poem seems extremely boring. The author goes into great detail with the wind, stream, clouds, everything in his surroundings. Although we ourselves can see it perfectly fine, he spends the time describing everything that we take for granted.
Just because we see it, doesn't mean we take the time to stop and look.

| Posted on 2007-03-21 | by a guest


.: Characterising Apollo :.

This poem may be personifying the god Apollo as the West Wind, as Apollo is identified by his characteristic ARROWS OF PESTILENCE AND DISEASE and is well-known to be a master of playing the LYRE.

In the poem, Shelley refers to "Pestilence-stricken multitudes" in Stanza 1 and demands, in Stanza 5, that the West Wind "Make me(him) thy lyre". These similarities are striking, but as most of the critics may not be familiar with both 'The Ode to the West Wind' and to Apollo's attributes, this information has, to my knowledge, been completely overlooked.

This is a personal outlook, but is a highly probable theory that should be accepted by literary experts.

-- Girish A

| Posted on 2007-03-15 | by a guest




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