Whither is fled the visionary gleam? Where is it now,the glory and the dream?  Discuss what do you think on reading these lines with reference to ''Ode: Intimations of Immortality'' by Wordsworth

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William Delaney | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Wordsworth is describing a universal experience. When we are children the world looks like a wonderful, magical place, partly because everything is so new to us. He was especially aware of this truth because he was a sensitive, poetic person. As we grow older and become preoccupied with the cares of adulthood, we lose the wonder of childhood along with the immortality we take for granted since it hasn't yet occurred to us that we are mortal. Children can be happy anywhere, doing virtually anything. They are especially happy when out in nature, such as playing at the beach, playing in a park, climbing trees--doing all the things children delight in doing. But we are all fated to become burdened with adult responsibilities, desires, fears, and worries, including financial worries. Wordsworth himself had serious financial worries because he was supporting his wife, his sister, and eventually five children. His "Ode: On Intimations of Immortality" is his most famous and most frequently anthologized poem, probably because so many people recognize its universal truths. (But it may be difficult to appreciate these truths when one is still young.) In the poem he traces the decline of youthful joy and wonder until the grown adult sees it "fade into the light of common day."


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