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This Lime-Tree Bower My Prison Analysis

Author: Poetry of Samuel Taylor Coleridge Type: Poetry Views: 4600

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Well, they are gone, and here must I remain,

This lime-tree bower my prison ! I have lost

Beauties and feelings, such as would have been

Most sweet to my remembrance even when age

Had dimm'd mine eyes to blindness ! They, meanwhile,

Friends, whom I never more may meet again,

On springy heath, along the hill-top edge,

Wander in gladness, and wind down, perchance,

To that still roaring dell, of which I told ;

The roaring dell, o'erwooded, narrow, deep,

And only speckled by the mid-day sun ;

Where its slim trunk the ash from rock to rock

Flings arching like a bridge ;--that branchless ash,

Unsunn'd and damp, whose few poor yellow leaves

Ne'er tremble in the gale, yet tremble still,

Fann'd by the water-fall ! and there my friends

Behold the dark green file of long lank weeds,

That all at once (a most fantastic sight !)

Still nod and drip beneath the dripping edge

Of the blue clay-stone.

[Image][Image][Image]Now, my friends emerge

Beneath the wide wide Heaven--and view again

The many-steepled tract magnificent

Of hilly fields and meadows, and the sea,

With some fair bark, perhaps, whose sails light up

The slip of smooth clear blue betwixt two Isles

Of purple shadow ! Yes ! they wander on

In gladness all ; but thou, methinks, most glad,

My gentle-hearted Charles ! for thou hast pined

And hunger'd after Nature, many a year,

In the great City pent, winning thy way

With sad yet patient soul, through evil and pain

And strange calamity ! Ah ! slowly sink

Behind the western ridge, thou glorious Sun !

Shine in the slant beams of the sinking orb,

Ye purple heath-flowers ! richlier burn, ye clouds !

Live in the yellow light, ye distant groves !

And kindle, thou blue Ocean ! So my friend

Struck with deep joy may stand, as I have stood,

Silent with swimming sense ; yea, gazing round

On the wide landscape, gaze till all doth seem

Less gross than bodily ; and of such hues

As veil the Almighty Spirit, when yet he makes

Spirits perceive his presence.

[Image][Image][Image][Image]A delight

Comes sudden on my heart, and I am glad

As I myself were there ! Nor in this bower,

This little lime-tree bower, have I not mark'd

Much that has sooth'd me. Pale beneath the blaze

Hung the transparent foliage ; and I watch'd

Some broad and sunny leaf, and lov'd to see

The shadow of the leaf and stem above

Dappling its sunshine ! And that walnut-tree

Was richly ting'd, and a deep radiance lay

Full on the ancient ivy, which usurps

Those fronting elms, and now, with blackest mass

Makes their dark branches gleam a lighter hue

Through the late twilight : and though now the bat

Wheels silent by, and not a swallow twitters,

Yet still the solitary humble-bee

Sings in the bean-flower ! Henceforth I shall know

That Nature ne'er deserts the wise and pure ;

No plot so narrow, be but Nature there,

No waste so vacant, but may well employ

Each faculty of sense, and keep the heart

Awake to Love and Beauty ! and sometimes

'Tis well to be bereft of promis'd good,

That we may lift the soul, and contemplate

With lively joy the joys we cannot share.

My gentle-hearted Charles ! when the last rook

Beat its straight path across the dusky air

Homewards, I blest it ! deeming its black wing

(Now a dim speck, now vanishing in light)

Had cross'd the mighty Orb's dilated glory,

While thou stood'st gazing ; or, when all was still,

Flew creeking o'er thy head, and had a charm

For thee, my gentle-hearted Charles, to whom

No sound is dissonant which tells of Life.


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

.: :.

Charles was actually IN the accident which crippled Colridge.
It does start off as a self-pity-centered poem, and does evolve with the writer\'s train of thought and perspective on his own situation.
I believe this poem to be a nostalgia-based remembrance of what happened that day.

| Posted on 2012-03-28 | by a guest

.: :.

This poem shows a a persons love for nature mature and grow. Samuel Coleridge is unable to walk along the beautiful trail that he knows very well, but that does not leave him completely in the dust. Although he may wallow in self pity initially, his attitude changes once he begins to write this poem. The poem that he wrote is a representation of a journey displayed through a sequence of thoughts. The poet images Charles and his friends on their journey along this trail. His imagination takes over and frees himself from his broken state of mind. It is as if he is on the journey with his friends. The beauty of nature is enough for him to feel beyond the physical restrictions in his current situation. However, nature cannot restrict him; he is left unrestricted with the power or poetry and nature combined.

| Posted on 2011-02-09 | by a guest

.: :.

The Lime- Tree Bower My Prison seems to show the maturity of a nature lover. From a man who wallows in self pity when his friends are out taking in nature to someone who says that nature is not restricted, Coleridge's marked change in attitude is amazing.
His tone is such that the reader finds himself relating to the poem. The poem is conversational.
The poem is a journey. A sequence of thoughts.
First, the poet is upset and indulges in hyperbole to highlight his self-pity.
Then, the poet slowly imagines what Charles and the others might be doing. His switch from self- pity to imagination brings a change in his pessimistic attitude. His imagination helps him recreate the journey for himself. Thus, he senses are awakened and he feels what he might have felt. His imagination takes him on the journey. He sees what Charles must have seen, feels what Charles must have felt, that reawakening of his senses make him slightly more optimistic.
He is then able to feel happy for his friend Charles. He realizes that Charles needed to experience nature. He needed the relief that the memory would bring him when in the city. Coleridge's finds happiness in his friend's joy.
Next, He realizes that even in the bower, nature expresses its self. The beauty of light reflecting itself on a leaf is enough to make him feel beyond the physical. He realizes that nature cannot be restricted. Nature cannot be confined to any one place. One can find nature everywhere.
In the end, Coleridge acknowledges the fact that for a true lover of nature, "no sound is dissonant which tells of Life". Even the croak of a rook is beauty for the true lover of nature. In this way, one only needs nature (which can be found anywhere) to be able to transcend one's self.
With this acknowledgement, comes a sense of enlightenment.

| Posted on 2009-04-11 | by a guest

.: :.

-he uses nature as a means of connection to his friends who left him (they are both in nature admiring it, which lessens his sadness of not being able to go on the walk)
-he is overly sad and dramatic, calling the bower his prison
-the point of the poem is he then gets over his sadness and appreciates the nature around him
-he poem says "no plot so narrow" and "no waste so vacant" and it connotes how in every situation there is always somethign to appreciate. for example, a desert or 'waste" or "plot" normally connotes places one wouldnt want to be but he is saying nature can be appreciate in any situation
-you can always find the beauty in nature

| Posted on 2006-01-20 | by Approved Guest

.: Analysis of imagination :.

The poem uses the imaginative journey as an escape from a constrictive or restrictive reality (using the imagination to free oneself) in this case, the narrator physically limited in his bower. It also shows the power of the imagination to alter his perception as it forces him to transcend his physical limitations to explore the infinite space of his imagination and thus come to realise he is not limited at all.
Coleridge uses conversational language to create intimacy, relating the narrator and the responder and thus encourage the responder to share in the educative elements of the narrator's journey.
The persona begins as childishly sulkly, expressed by exaggerating his condition, "I have lost beauties and feelings" and exclamation marks to pronounce a tantrum-like state. The imaginative journey is therefore one of growth, reflected in the language which progresses from monosyllabic words, "Well, they are gone," to more refined language.
Each stanza is a reflection of a different state of mind but is ultimately CYCLICAL to reinforce this idea of growth, climatically stating, "No sound is dissonant which tells of Life." This links the conversational 'sound' of this poem with the growth that has been inspired by his imagination, but also, by capitalization of the word Life grants this transformative power to nature.
The poem also endorses friendship, that between the narrator and Charles as the catalyst to his change in values. The narrator contrasts his current situation to Charles, who is bereft of the joys of nature in 'the great city pent' with all the connotations of pollution and industrial waste, to his own seemingly poor situation. The narrator finds, that while he may not be able to join his friends on their walk in nature, he realises that he himself is surrounded by the beauty of nature that is inherent, even in his lime tree bower.
"'Tis well to be bereft of promised good, that we may life the Soul and contemplate with lively joys, the joys we cannot share." States that the absence of something makes us recognise its value, however as nature and the power of the imagination is universal, it is impossible to be bereft of its joy because it cannot be contained.

- Alita Battle Angel

| Posted on 2005-07-07 | by Approved Guest

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