WHAT ARE THE THEMES OF THE POEM "REPORT TO WORDSWORTH"?AND FURTHER EXPLANATION ON IT TO!!!

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The primary theme of the poem is to take Wordsworth's extreme love of nature and contrast it to the modern setting.  What would the modern Romantic thinker, who placed such a primacy on nature and the reverence of the natural setting, feel about the condition of the environment today?  What would be said with the extinction of animals at the hands of human beings (Examine the relationship between the man and the whale in the poem.)  How about the increase in gases and the puncturing of the ozone layer (seen in the last two lines)?  Essentially, the poem takes the modern setting and contrasts this lack of respect of nature to the Romantic vision of nature, echoed in Wordsworth's poems such as "The World is Too Much with Us" and "My Heart Leaps Up."  In Wordsworth's poetry, there is a strong connection between the advancement of human happiness and the communion with nature.  Cheng's "report" consists of expanding on this idea, the vision of the modern setting juxtaposed with that of the Romantics.  Cheng's report consists of detailing how far off the pace the modern setting is in regards to the Romantic view of nature.  It takes the strongly environmental and eco- friendly approach of the Romantics and applies it to a modern setting replete with economic growth and industry.  The state of this context with regards to the environment becomes one of Cheng's important themes in the poem.