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To A Skylark Analysis



Author: Poetry of Percy Bysshe Shelley Type: Poetry Views: 1286





Hail to thee, blithe Spirit!

Bird thou never wert,

That from Heaven, or near it,

Pourest thy full heart

In profuse strains of unpremeditated art.



Higher still and higher

From the earth thou springest

Like a cloud of fire;

The blue deep thou wingest,

And singing still dost soar, and soaring ever singest.



In the golden lightning

Of the sunken sun

O'er which clouds are bright'ning,

Thou dost float and run,

Like an unbodied joy whose race is just begun.



The pale purple even

Melts around thy flight;

Like a star of Heaven

In the broad daylight

Thou art unseen, but yet I hear thy shrill delight:



Keen as are the arrows

Of that silver sphere,

Whose intense lamp narrows

In the white dawn clear

Until we hardly see--we feel that it is there.



All the earth and air

With thy voice is loud.

As, when night is bare,

From one lonely cloud

The moon rains out her beams, and heaven is overflowed.



What thou art we know not;

What is most like thee?

From rainbow clouds there flow not

Drops so bright to see

As from thy presence showers a rain of melody.



Like a poet hidden

In the light of thought,

Singing hymns unbidden,

Till the world is wrought

To sympathy with hopes and fears it heeded not:



Like a high-born maiden

In a palace tower,

Soothing her love-laden

Soul in secret hour

With music sweet as love, which overflows her bower:



Like a glow-worm golden

In a dell of dew,

Scattering unbeholden

Its aerial hue

Among the flowers and grass, which screen it from the view:



Like a rose embowered

In its own green leaves,

By warm winds deflowered,

Till the scent it gives

Makes faint with too much sweet these heavy-winged thieves.



Sound of vernal showers

On the twinkling grass,

Rain-awakened flowers,

All that ever was

Joyous, and clear, and fresh, thy music doth surpass.



Teach us, sprite or bird,

What sweet thoughts are thine:

I have never heard

Praise of love or wine

That panted forth a flood of rapture so divine.



Chorus hymeneal

Or triumphal chaunt

Matched with thine, would be all

But an empty vaunt--

A thing wherein we feel there is some hidden want.



What objects are the fountains

Of thy happy strain?

What fields, or waves, or mountains?

What shapes of sky or plain?

What love of thine own kind? what ignorance of pain?



With thy clear keen joyance

Languor cannot be:

Shadow of annoyance

Never came near thee:

Thou lovest, but ne'er knew love's sad satiety.



Waking or asleep,

Thou of death must deem

Things more true and deep

Than we mortals dream,

Or how could thy notes flow in such a crystal stream?



We look before and after,

And pine for what is not:

Our sincerest laughter

With some pain is fraught;

Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.



Yet if we could scorn

Hate, and pride, and fear;

If we were things born

Not to shed a tear,

I know not how thy joy we ever should come near.



Better than all measures

Of delightful sound,

Better than all treasures

That in books are found,

Thy skill to poet were, thou scorner of the ground!



Teach me half the gladness

That thy brain must know,

Such harmonious madness

From my lips would flow

The world should listen then, as I am listening now!










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

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| Posted on 2012-11-02 | by a guest


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I sir have the downs. And I believe this poem is about this bird who has the downs. EVERYBODY HAS THE DOWNS!

| Posted on 2012-03-06 | by a guest


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I don\'t know what this poem is about because ive never read it.

| Posted on 2012-03-06 | by a guest


.: :.

This poem makes me think of Kimba the white lion. Eventhough the skylark is a brown bird. the first one is king of the savanna and the second one is the king or queen of the sky bringing joy to the living being below him. While the skylark is in the sky and everyone on earth is listening to his song, the white lion Kimba is on his rock and everyone is watching to it from below and listening to the beast with joy

| Posted on 2010-11-06 | by a guest


.: :.

this poem i really really a meaningful one..
coz\' i want to be a bird omeday.. i want to be free..
:)

| Posted on 2010-08-27 | by a guest


.: :.

This poem is really a unique one of P. B. Shelly. His sensuousness reveals well through this poem.
Mr. Samar Ghosal
Mob : 9748144947

| Posted on 2010-08-21 | by a guest


.: :.

This poem is really a unique one of P. B. Shelly. His sensuousness reveals well through this poem.
Mr. Samar Ghosal
Mob : 9748144947

| Posted on 2010-08-21 | by a guest


.: :.

It is a beautiful poem, where the poet expresses his thoughts intensely to the movement of the bird. According to him the bird is spiritual with divine powers.
The bird is indeed mystical. The power of it's voice is of course like a beam of the moon that echoes to the earth like a glorious song.

| Posted on 2010-06-05 | by a guest


.: :.

The speaker, addressing a skylark, says that it is a “blithe Spirit” rather than a bird, for its song comes from Heaven, and from its full heart pours “profuse strains of unpremeditated art.” The skylark flies higher and higher, “like a cloud of fire” in the blue sky, singing as it flies. In the “golden lightning” of the sun, it floats and runs, like “an unbodied joy.” As the skylark flies higher and higher, the speaker loses sight of it, but is still able to hear its “shrill delight,” which comes down as keenly as moonbeams in the “white dawn,” which can be felt even when they are not seen. The earth and air ring with the skylark’s voice, just as Heaven overflows with moonbeams when the moon shines out from behind “a lonely cloud.”
The speaker says that no one knows what the skylark is, for it is unique: even “rainbow clouds” do not rain as brightly as the shower of melody that pours from the skylark. The bird is “like a poet hidden / In the light of thought,” able to make the world experience “sympathy with hopes and fears it heeded not.” It is like a lonely maiden in a palace tower, who uses her song to soothe her lovelorn soul. It is like a golden glow-worm, scattering light among the flowers and grass in which it is hidden. It is like a rose embowered in its own green leaves, whose scent is blown by the wind until the bees are faint with “too much sweet.” The skylark’s song surpasses “all that ever was, / Joyous and clear and fresh,” whether the rain falling on the “twinkling grass” or the flowers the rain awakens.
Calling the skylark “Sprite or Bird,” the speaker asks it to tell him its “sweet thoughts,” for he has never heard anyone or anything call up “a flood of rapture so divine.” Compared to the skylark’s, any music would seem lacking. What objects, the speaker asks, are “the fountains of thy happy strain?” Is it fields, waves, mountains, the sky, the plain, or “love of thine own kind” or “ignorance or pain”? Pain and languor, the speaker says, “never came near” the skylark: it loves, but has never known “love’s sad satiety.” Of death, the skylark must know “things more true and deep” than mortals could dream; otherwise, the speaker asks, “how could thy notes flow in such a crystal stream?”
For mortals, the experience of happiness is bound inextricably with the experience of sadness: dwelling upon memories and hopes for the future, mortal men “pine for what is not”; their laughter is “fraught” with “some pain”; their “sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.” But, the speaker says, even if men could “scorn / Hate and pride and fear,” and were born without the capacity to weep, he still does not know how they could ever approximate the joy expressed by the skylark. Calling the bird a “scorner of the ground,” he says that its music is better than all music and all poetry. He asks the bird to teach him “half the gladness / That thy brain must know,” for then he would overflow with “harmonious madness,” and his song would be so beautiful that the world would listen to him, even as he is now listening to the skylark.

| Posted on 2009-12-16 | by a guest


.: :.

The speaker, addressing a skylark, says that it is a “blithe Spirit” rather than a bird, for its song comes from Heaven, and from its full heart pours “profuse strains of unpremeditated art.” The skylark flies higher and higher, “like a cloud of fire” in the blue sky, singing as it flies. In the “golden lightning” of the sun, it floats and runs, like “an unbodied joy.” As the skylark flies higher and higher, the speaker loses sight of it, but is still able to hear its “shrill delight,” which comes down as keenly as moonbeams in the “white dawn,” which can be felt even when they are not seen. The earth and air ring with the skylark’s voice, just as Heaven overflows with moonbeams when the moon shines out from behind “a lonely cloud.”
The speaker says that no one knows what the skylark is, for it is unique: even “rainbow clouds” do not rain as brightly as the shower of melody that pours from the skylark. The bird is “like a poet hidden / In the light of thought,” able to make the world experience “sympathy with hopes and fears it heeded not.” It is like a lonely maiden in a palace tower, who uses her song to soothe her lovelorn soul. It is like a golden glow-worm, scattering light among the flowers and grass in which it is hidden. It is like a rose embowered in its own green leaves, whose scent is blown by the wind until the bees are faint with “too much sweet.” The skylark’s song surpasses “all that ever was, / Joyous and clear and fresh,” whether the rain falling on the “twinkling grass” or the flowers the rain awakens.
Calling the skylark “Sprite or Bird,” the speaker asks it to tell him its “sweet thoughts,” for he has never heard anyone or anything call up “a flood of rapture so divine.” Compared to the skylark’s, any music would seem lacking. What objects, the speaker asks, are “the fountains of thy happy strain?” Is it fields, waves, mountains, the sky, the plain, or “love of thine own kind” or “ignorance or pain”? Pain and languor, the speaker says, “never came near” the skylark: it loves, but has never known “love’s sad satiety.” Of death, the skylark must know “things more true and deep” than mortals could dream; otherwise, the speaker asks, “how could thy notes flow in such a crystal stream?”
For mortals, the experience of happiness is bound inextricably with the experience of sadness: dwelling upon memories and hopes for the future, mortal men “pine for what is not”; their laughter is “fraught” with “some pain”; their “sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.” But, the speaker says, even if men could “scorn / Hate and pride and fear,” and were born without the capacity to weep, he still does not know how they could ever approximate the joy expressed by the skylark. Calling the bird a “scorner of the ground,” he says that its music is better than all music and all poetry. He asks the bird to teach him “half the gladness / That thy brain must know,” for then he would overflow with “harmonious madness,” and his song would be so beautiful that the world would listen to him, even as he is now listening to the skylark.

| Posted on 2009-12-16 | by a guest


.: :.

Shelley's poetry revealed two types of idealism. While in his poem 'Ode to the West Wind' he gave vent to his revolutionary idealism, in 'To a Skylark' he dealt with Platonic idealism. The abstract and the invisible are more real than the concrete and the visible. Shelley's bird is not a bird of flesh and blood. It is more a spirit. Shelley made it a scorner of the ground. While Wordsworth made its skylark 'true to the kindred points of heaven and home', Shelley made his skylark a denizen of the sky where it got lost for ever.
Dr. Ratan Bhattacharjee from Kolkata, India

| Posted on 2009-09-30 | by a guest


.: :.

Shelley's poetry revealed two types of idealism. While in his poem 'Ode to the West Wind' he gave vent to his revolutionary idealism, in 'To a Skylark' he dealt with Platonic idealism. The abstract and the invisible are more real than the concrete and the visible. Shelley's bird is not a bird of flesh and blood. It is more a spirit. Shelley made it a scorner of the ground. While Wordsworth made its skylark 'true to the kindred points of heaven and home', Shelley made his skylark a denizen of the sky where it got lost for ever.

| Posted on 2009-09-30 | by a guest


.: :.

To a Skylark is a romantic poem about nature and all of its beauty. It is a tribute to the bird and nature how easily and freely the birds sing. The poet is almost pining for the ability to express himself through poetry as easily as the birds do through song.

| Posted on 2009-03-11 | by a guest


.: :.

This poem actually has very little to do with Shelley's "Romanticism". This is actually a kind of Shamanic Poetry, writen as a sort of spell. The Skylark is really a sort of spirt, or muse, bringing great song and pure joy to the world, from the heavens. The speaker sees and hears this "bird", and wonders of it's power; however, in order to obtain this spirits power, he must understand it first. The only issue with understanding this spirit is, it is so great, there is no word in any language that can describe it. He must compare it to other beings; the poet lost in beautiful though, the love stricken maiden singing from inside her dwelling, the glow worm hidden from view; all of these situations are truely beautiful, but only a small portion of them can be seen and understood. The rest of this poem is the finishing of the shamanic spell. The speaker is still unsure what this spirit is, but he understands that the joy and love it brings to those around it could never be understood by any living man on earth. Eventually, out of despiration, the speaker almost beggs the spirit to teach him half of this harmonious wisdom, for if he could put this song into a poem, the world will stop to listen.

| Posted on 2009-02-25 | by a guest


.: Comment. :.

This poem has to do with Percy Bysche Shelley being a Romantic, and admiring nature in alot of ways: skylark, glow-worm, rose.
He expresses his love and passion for art as well: "like a poet hidden in the light of thought", but seems to compare man-made art with the skylark's 'unpremeditated art'.
The poem is a song, which could mean that the poet is attempting to imitate the skylark's talent and skill. He did not set a steady rhyme scheme which could highlight the imperfection of poetry in comparision to the Skylark's song.

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




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