What is William Wordsworth's relationship to nature in "I Wandered Lonely As a Cloud"?

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Nature brings Wordsworth joy in "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" and is the gift that keeps on giving.

As the poem begins, Wordsworth, who loves to be out in nature, is wandering around feeling sad and alienated when he sees thousands of daffodils swaying in the breeze in front of a lake. They seem to be dancing. They appear alive and joyous to him, and his loneliness disappears as he watches them. It is if they are a happy crowd of people.

The daffodils give Wordsworth joy the moment he stumbles upon them, but that is not the end of the story. When he is lying "pensive," or thoughtful, indoors on his sofa, he thinks again of the dancing daffodils, and the memory brings him renewed joy.

Memory and nature are both important to Wordsworth. Nature is, for him, a gift he can keep on remembering and finding solace in, even when indoors.

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The famous poem "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" by William Wordsworth begins with an aloof view of nature as the poet compares himself to a distant cloud, which is remote and untouchable. However, he soon focuses his attention on things nearer at hand when he contemplates a host of what he estimates is ten thousand daffodils. Considering the cloud makes him lonely, but the daffodils fill him with the deep joy of proximity to nature.

At the sight of the daffodils, Wordsworth's spirit is drawn into the midst of the dance of nature. When he first views the daffodils, though, he doesn't realize at the time that he is being doubly privileged. Not only does he experience the glee of the moment, but he carries away the memory of the event so vividly that he is able to recreate the closeness to nature that he felt at the time and relive it. The wondrous dancing daffodils, therefore, give him an immediate connection with nature, and they also give him a lasting joyful vision that he can play back in his mind's eye whenever he wants.

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Like so many of the English Romantic poets, Wordsworth held Nature in high esteem. The speaker in "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud," discovers that even the memory of a scene of beauty in Nature can be uplifting. The speaker does little more than register the sight of the daffodil's "sprightly dance" when it first happens:

I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought
It is not until later that he appreciates the true resonance of the joy it brought to his heart and mind. When the speaker subsequently finds himself in a thoughtful mood, or even a mood in which his mind is clear, the memory of how the daffodils fluttered in the breeze returns to him and makes him feel joyful. It is not an overstatement, then, to say that this poem indicates that Wordsworth believed that Nature's power was transcendent and transformational.
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Nature is seen in a reverential light in the Wordsworth poem.  His relationship to nature is one where he envisions it as one would the divine.  Wordsworth recognizes how fortunate he is to have had such an experience in nature. It is one in which the poet understands the joy of being included in the wonders of nature.  Wordsworth uses language such as "gay" and "jocund company" to express this condition.  Nature has given Wordsworth a "wealth" simply by the experience.  This relationship brought on the by the experience of the daffodils has been enhanced as time has passed.  The last stanza indicates this:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;

The "bliss of solitude" helps to convey the spiritual relationship that Wordsworth has with nature.  It has helped him to develop "that inward eye."  Such references help to communicate the reverence in the relationship that Wordsworth has with nature.

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