What are examples of personification in "Water Lilies" by Sara Teasdale?

Expert Answers
coachingcorner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This poem does not seem to present any heavy presence of personification except perhaps in the mention of the water lilies smelling 'sleepy.' In this poem 'Water Lilies' by Sara Teasdale we see more the poet speaking to the reader 'about' the lilies as objects of Nature. By referring to their scent as 'sleepy' however, she does a good job of getting us to imagine the whole scene as dozing and the water lilies themselves as being asleep. Of course, flowers do not 'sleep' in any real sense so what the poet has done is to connect in our minds the thought of sleep with the calm, soporific fragrance of the flowers so that we instantly think of sleepy flowers. It is their scent that may be sleep-inducing though, and not the lilies which actually sleep. It creates mood and atmosphere effectively.