Discuss the role of inspiration in “Kubla Khan.”

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If there's a poem that can be said to be inspired, it's Coleridge's "Kubla Khan." He claimed that it was composed one night after an opium-induced dream. He also claimed, somewhat less fancifully, that it was inspired by a sentence written by the Renaissance historian Samuel Purchas:

Here the Khan Kubla commanded a palace to be built, and a stately garden thereunto. And thus ten miles of fertile ground were inclosed with a wall.

However Coleridge received his inspiration, there's little doubt that his finished work is a testament to the powers of the imagination. The title character himself, far from being the cruel despot that history tells us he...

(The entire section contains 326 words.)

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