What would you say is the story line for "The Eagle," by Alfred, Lord Tennyson is?

Expert Answers
Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

If there is a story in Tennyson's poem it would center on the life of the eagle.  At this point, one would be seeking to go past the verses mentioned and the lines indicated.  The opening stanza reveals the eagle to be sitting alone and apart from others.  Sitting on a perch, he is able to look over the world.  As the eagle is overlooking the sea and the world down below, he suddenly falls.  This individualistic and proud creature suddenly dies in the end.  There might be some hints which indicate that this is the fate of all creatures and especially those who are at high perches, more susceptible to a great fall.  The "hands" in the first line indicate that the eagle might have parallels to man, who flies high only to be brought down by the inexorable pull of gravity and weight of being.  The story here might be the story of humanity and Tennyson is using the eagle as a symbolic representation of mankind.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It is not easy to have much of a story line with a poem that is that short...  What do you think is going on here?  What is an eagle doing when it falls like a thunderbolt?

To me, the storyline is that the eagle is sitting on a rock (crag).  He looks down, sees the ocean, presumably sees something to eat, and dives down to catch it.

To me, the story line is not the important part of this poem.  It is less about what happens and more about the imagery.