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What is the significance of the poem, "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud"?

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teardrop | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 30, 2009 at 8:06 AM via web

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What is the significance of the poem, "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud"?

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ms-mcgregor | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 30, 2009 at 11:27 AM (Answer #1)

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Wordworth's poem, "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" is "reputed to be the most anthologized poem in the world." That means that this particular poem has been included in more textbooks and collections of poetry and literature than any other poem, at least in the English language. The reason for this is that the poem is very simple and a prime example of English romanticism. The simplicity lies in the recollection of a moment when the poet was walking and saw a group of wild daffodils. He compares the flowers to dancers, an army and stars in the Milky Way. He even implies though the use of the word "host" that the flowers are almost divine in nature. This childlike wonder and exhaultation of nature enables Wordsworth to capture the spirit of the Romantic movement in this one short, simple poem. 

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krishna-agrawala | College Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted May 30, 2009 at 3:45 PM (Answer #2)

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The charm or attraction of this poem for me is its simplicity. One need not dig deep into meaning between the lines to understand or enjoy the problem. It is a description of a natural scene that the poet may have actually seen or he has just imagined.

The way this scene is described, the poem creates an atmosphere of vibrancy and joy. For example, expressions like:

Tossing their heads in sprightly dance,

or

They out did the sparkling waves in glee.

And the final line,

They flash upon the inward eye, which is the bliss of solitude,

serves the purpose of imprinting the scene on minds of readers also forever.

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