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To A Butterfly (first poem) Analysis



Author: Poetry of William Wordsworth Type: Poetry Views: 1820

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Stay near me---do not take thy flight!

A little longer stay in sight!

Much converse do I find I thee,

Historian of my infancy !

Float near me; do not yet depart!

Dead times revive in thee:

Thou bring'st, gay creature as thou art!

A solemn image to my heart,

My father's family!



Oh! pleasant, pleasant were the days,

The time, when, in our childish plays,

My sister Emmeline and I

Together chased the butterfly!

A very hunter did I rush

Upon the prey:---with leaps and spring

I followed on from brake to bush;

But she, God love her, feared to brush

The dust from off its wings.





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

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This is a poem which tells how childhood flies away like the butterfly.It tells how a person's childhood is very important and how that person must make well out of it and enjoy every moment of their childhood.

| Posted on 2015-01-06 | by a guest


.: :.

This is a poem which tells how childhood flies away like the butterfly.It tells how a person's childhood is very important and how that person must make well out of it and enjoy every moment of their childhood.

| Posted on 2015-01-06 | by a guest


.: :.

In our childhood we all start with an innocence and a curiosity thats inside of us. In the first part of the poem it shows the soft gentle understanding compassionate side of love and respect to share a moment together of beauty and wonder.
In the second part the hunter emerges the killer instinct to catch and capture the prey, control not letting obstacles in our path to hinder our goals. Emmeline god bless her has a soul of love and compassion,
The butterfly being the perfect being of change and metamorphosis,for one thing to another, wordsworth sees this as the time he understands that all have good and evil within ourselves, he has come of age.

| Posted on 2014-08-22 | by a guest


.: :.

Basically the narrator is charmed by a butterfly in his garden which makes him think of the gracefull movements he spent in his childhood.! His sister emmeline who was very close to wordsworth,both used to play in their garden...alas! Wordsworth wanted that butterfly not to fly away as he wanted to dwell on his past!

| Posted on 2014-04-28 | by a guest


.: :.

In his sentimental recollection of days gone by, William Wordsworth celebrates two loves—nature and his sister Emmeline. Wordsworth\'s delight in seeing the sparrow\'s nest is stated at the outset of the poem (\"Few visions have I seen more fair\"). He seems to revel in its beautiful simplicity; however, the nest provides pleasure to Wordsworth on a dual level: immediately, he enjoys the beauty of the nest itself. More profoundly, the sight conjures fond memories of his childhood.
In this poem, finding a sparrow\'s nest reminds Wordsworth of when, as young children, he and his sister Emmeline discovered a sparrow\'s nest next to their home that they visited every day, rain or shine (\"...in wet or dry\"). Young Emmeline was torn—she wanted to see the nest and be close to it, but she was fearful, perhaps of disturbing the baby birds. The conflict within her—her innocent curiosity versus a fear of something bad happening to the baby birds—showed a sensitivity that endeared her greatly to Wordsworth, both during their childhood and their adult years. (\"The Blessing of my later year / Was with me when a Boy\")
Wordsworth\'s rhyme scheme gives the poem a lilting feel, perfect for painting an image of childlike innocence. His use of end rhyme (years/ears/fears/tears) gives the poem a simplicity that easily sweeps the reader into a child\'s world of wonder, rather than having to focus on the cadence of the poem. His use of capital letters sprinkled throughout the poem give us a glimpse of the images and impressions most vivid in Wordsworth\'s mind. By capitalizing \"Sparrow,\" Wordsworth bestows upon the bird and its nest the same respect and fondness he feels for his childhood home (\"My Father\'s House\"). In capitalizing \"Sister Emmeline,\" \"Prattler,\" and \"Blessing,\" he focuses on the deeper source of his joy in the poem—his beloved sister.
That Wordsworth loves his sister is clearly evident in the second stanza. He refers to her affectionately as a \"Prattler among men,\" and speaks of her as having heart and being a blessing to him, both in his youth and as an adult. Wordsworth credits his sister with \"giving\" him the qualities that most would consider admirable—eyes (the ability to look with appreciation at nature and life); ears (the ability to listen, hear, and discern); humble cares (humility, or perhaps contentment); delicate fears (tenderness and empathy); a heart, the fountain of sweet tears (sensitivity); and love, thought, and joy. These are the traits that Emmeline possesses that Wordsworth loves, that makes her his Blessing, both because she displays these traits and because she has taught him to embrace and display them as well.
Our five senses—sight, sound, touch, feeling, and smell—all have the ability to trigger memories deep within us. In The Sparrow\'s Nest, Wordsworth\'s sighting of a simple bird\'s nest evokes memories of the fondest kind—those of his childhood, and that of a sibling who was truly loved..

| Posted on 2010-12-12 | by a guest


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The poet wants us to know about our childhood day with full of naturalness of the country side or rural life. there a fear in his mind when he goes old and think about the death which is ahead of him.as the human nature will not permit us to live forever on this earth the poet look out for his end and he remembers his childhood days when he had a very closed relation with the nature like the butterfly and many other natural living and non-living on this world.
posted on 2010-7-24/ by a guest

| Posted on 2010-07-24 | by a guest


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The butterfly symbolizes wordworths childhood. He wants the memories of his childhood to stay. Later in the poem he explains how he and his sister Emmeline (Dorothy in real life) chased away the butterfly. Meaning they chased away their childhood.

| Posted on 2010-05-17 | by a guest


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I realise that all of you sound like you understand this poem, but does anyone you really? i am just as good as anyone at sounding like i know what i am talking about, but when it comes to incomprehensible poems from the 1800's i am lost.

| Posted on 2009-06-23 | by a guest


.: :.

I also think this is talking about the speakers childhood. I think the first stanza is saying how the butterfly symbolizes the speakers childhood. The speaker wants his youth to stay when saying "stay near me" and "A little longer stay in sight" I think the speaker speaks of the "solemn image" of his fathers family (death of relatives) to create a contrast between the young and the old. The second stanza seems to be saying how when he was younger the speaker "chased the butterfly" which to me means he was trying to chase away his youth or grow up faster. He "rushed" to catch the prey. I don't quite understand the last two lines though
All just my opinion

| Posted on 2009-02-23 | by a guest


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.: :.
I think the butterfly is actually wordsworth's mother

| Posted on 2008-11-29 | by a guest


.: BK :.

wow.. i dont think anyone here offered the most likely interpretation.
To a butterfly by William Wordsworth follows a butterfly through its flight, which causes the speaker to reminisce on his childhood. The speaker pleads with the butterfly to stay in sight because he is pleased to look at it. According to the speaker, the butterfly is the Historian of [his] infancy!, meaning the butterfly brings back memories of his childhood. The speaker pleads again by saying Float near me; do not yet depart! because Dead times revive in [the butterfly]. The speaker then says that although you are such a happy creature, butterfly, you bring a solemn image to my heart. The image is then described in line nine, my father s family! The second stanza begins with the speaker reminiscing.

| Posted on 2008-04-24 | by a guest


.: first stanza :.

well i think that in first stanza he is asking the butterfly to stay with him because from that little butterfly he could recall his past childhood days when when he use to play with butterfly.
'Historian of my infancy!'

| Posted on 2008-03-01 | by a guest


.: :.

often in his poems wordsworth has a reoccuring theme of nature and childhood. I believe in the first stanza he is talking about the course of nature, how in life we start as children the progress to adults, i believe he is saying he wants to take hold of his childhood, and never let it go, and keep it at all times, This is restated in the second stanza when he elaborates about his childhood days chasing butterflies. .

| Posted on 2008-02-05 | by a guest


.: :.

wordsworth is talking about his child hood in the second verse as he talks of chasing butterflys.

i dont quite understand the first verse so if someone could offer some of their thoughts it might help people to understand it more. i think he is writing about someone leaving who he wishes could stay?

| Posted on 2007-03-31 | by a guest


.: :.

I believe that his poem has something to do with his childhood years! When he talks about the pleasent days and childish plays. Wordsworth also speaks of his sister and chasing butterflies(playing together). Wordsworth also includes his actions towarded capturing the butterfly.
I don't quite get the first verse though.
Well, maybe he speaks to one of his family memeber who is about to leave. "My father's family"- may talk about his uncle or aunt he lived with after the death of his parents.

| Posted on 2005-02-21 | by Approved Guest




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