Will take from both a deep, autumnal tone, Of the horizon to the zenith’s height, The wind is a very important part of this poem, but one must look closer to realize what the wind actually symbolizes.The speaker wishes for the wind to come in and comfort him in lines 52 54. Her clarion o’er the dreaming earth, and fill The blue Mediterranean, where he lay, Haworth, Helen E. "'Ode to the West Wind' and the Sonnet Form." The sapless foliage of the ocean, know. Of the dying year, to which this closing night closing lines of his poem ‘The Windhover’. I bleed! See important quotes from Ode to the West Wind by Percy Bysshe Shelley - organized by theme and location, with explanations about what each means. The poem is 'Ode to the West Wind,' and it's about his hope that his words will be carried, as if by the wind (hence the title), to those who need to hear them. With living hues and odours plain and hill: Shelley continues by describing how the west wind transports (like a charioteer driving somebody) the seeds from the flowers, taking them to their ‘wintry bed’. It was originally published in 1820 by Charles in London as part of the collection Prometheus Unbound, A Lyrical Drama in Four Acts, With Other Poems. The locks of the approaching storm. Thou who didst waken from his summer dreams Are driven, like ghosts from an enchanter fleeing, Yellow, and black, and pale, and hectic red, Pestilence-stricken multitudes: O thou, 3. Be thou me, impetuous one! A heavy weight of hours has chain’d and bow’d incite revolution He … That's sort of the general gist of it. But what does it mean? ." O wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn's being, Thou, from whose unseen presence the leaves dead Post was not sent - check your email addresses! If I were a swift cloud to fly with thee; “If you think my winter is too cold, you don’t deserve my spring.” Ans. O wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn’s being, Wild Spirit, which art moving everywhere; the poet begs the "Wild Spirit" of the wind, the "dirge/ Of the dying year." Thy voice, and suddenly grow gray with fear, Be thou, Spirit fierce, Oh, lift me as a wave, a leaf, a cloud! ______Bird thou never wert—. … Personal and political are thus closely linked in ‘Ode to the West Wind’, which constantly draws attention to the aural potential of the wind: it cannot be seen (though its effects certainly can), but it can be heard, much as the poet’s words could be word, announcing and calling for political reform. So sweet, the sense faints picturing them! Of vapours, from whose solid atmosphere As an adult, he complains, he is too burdened by life, by the “heavy weight of hours,” to share naturally in the freedom and power of the Wind. It’s as if the leaves have been infected with a pestilence or plague, that makes them drop en masse. In the famous closing words of the poem, ‘If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?’, Shelley returns to the earlier imagery of the poem involving the west wind scattering the dead leaves to pave the way for the new trees next spring; the poem ends on a resounding note of hope for what the future could bring – for Shelley, nature, and for the political world. Now Shelley talks about the clouds borne by the west wind as being like locks of har on the head of ‘some fierce Maenad’: the Maenads were a group of women who followed the god Dionysus in classical myth. Percy Shelley: Poems Quotes and Analysis “One wandering thought pollutes the day;” A person's consciousness, conscience, and ability to think abstractly can be steered in wasteful directions easily, distracting a person from other thoughts and productive actions. On the blue surface of thine aëry surge, Perhaps more than anything else, Shelley wanted his message of reform and revolution spread, and the wind becomes the trope … A west wind is a wind that blows from the west, in an eastward direction. Much as scattering of the withered dead leaves allows the seeds of next year’s trees to take root and grow, so Shelley believes it is only by having his old ideas blown away that he can dream of new ones, and with it, a new world, ‘a new birth’. The whole idea here is freedom in that the wind is free and he wishes that the masses were as well, also wishing he was young and could what? Sweet though in sadness. I were as in my boyhood, and could be. Shelley likens himself to the forest in that his ‘leaves are falling’: he is withering away, but also growing older (mind you, he was only in his mid-twenties when he wrote ‘Ode to the West Wind’!). Shelley would be completely free; the only thing that would be freer is the ‘uncontrollable’ west wind itself. Q.4. The ashes may be dead and burnt, but by moving they often burst into new life, and new sparks emerge from the ashes. As thus with thee in prayer in my sore need. The simile draws attention to the raging, wild nature of the west wind, which heralds the approach of the wild storm. The west wind, Zephirus, represents that animate universe in Shelley's ode. He would be free already. His early poems include Queen Mab (1813). Shelley continues to address the west wind in this second section, saying that the wind bears the clouds along, much as it moves the ‘decaying leaves’ from the trees; as if to spell out this link, Shelley speaks of the ‘tangled boughs of Heaven and Ocean’, suggesting that the skies and the seas have ‘boughs’ like a tree. Shelley is saying that if he could recapture that boyhood freedom, he would never have to pray to the west wind in times of need. The Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature, Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations, https://en.wikiquote.org/w/index.php?title=West_wind&oldid=2734510, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. In the closing lines of the poem, Shelley tells the wind to be like a trumpet announcing a prophecy, blowing through the poet’s lips to make a sound and alert the sleeping world to Shelley’s message of reform. The power of the west wind is also suggested through the idea that the Atlantic ocean, possessed of ‘level powers’, creates ‘chasms’ and gaps for the wind to echo within. PMLA 51, 4 (Dec. 1936) pp 1069-79 [free at jstor, click "Preview" or "Read Online"]. This is where things get a little harder to pick apart and analyse. One too like thee: tameless, and swift, and proud. A dreamy evocation of the Mediterranean, including an isle of pumice rock in ‘Baiae’s bay’ (Baiae was an ancient Roman town on the northwest shore of the Gulf of Naples), and ‘old palaces and towers’ overgrown with blue moss and sweet flowers. Shelley entreats the west wind to play him, as a man would play a lyre (a string instrument not dissimilar to a harp, and the origin, incidentally, of the word lyric to describe lyric poetry and song lyrics: there’s something slightly ‘meta’ about a nature poet asking nature to play him like an instrument). Shelley sees his poem as a religious incantation or chant, which will magically make the wind scatter his thoughts like leaves – or, indeed, like ashes and sparks in a fireplace. The term “spring” has been used throughout history to refer to various uprisings and political movements, such as the Spring of … It's a warm wind, the west wind, full of birds' cries; I never hear the west wind but tears are in my eyes. Most importantly the poem is brimming with emotion, ranging from adulation, worship, desperate pleading, sadness, and humbleness. Shelley’s use of imagery the poem “Ode to the West Wind”. Ode to the West Wind Beside a pumice isle in Baiae’s bay, This poem is written to make the people of the society realize that they are shackled in … A wave to pant beneath thy power, and share. Shelley is, of course, using the idea of falling on the thorns of life as a metaphor for his emotional and psychological torment. Quivering within the wave’s intenser day. Ashes and sparks, my words among mankind! He comes with western winds, with evening's wandering airs. The poet has a deep, mystic appreciation for nature, as inthe poem “To Wordsworth” (1816), and thisintense connection with t… ‘Ode to the West Wind’ is one of the best-known and best-loved poems by Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822). 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