"They Seemed Like Old Companions In Adversity"

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Last Updated on January 19, 2017, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 141

Context: In "A Winter Piece" Bryant paints poetically a lovely winter landscape and contrasts it briefly with the same scene in other seasons of the year. The poem opens, like Wordsworth's "Tintern Abbey," with the poet's memories of past pleasures inspired by beautiful natural scenes, and his early feeling of closeness to Nature in both happy and despondent moods:

While I stood
In Nature's loneliness, I was with one
With whom I early grew familiar, one
Who never had a frown for me, whose voice
Never rebuked me for the hours I stole
From cares I loved not, but of which the world
Deems highest, to converse with her. When shrieked
The bleak November winds, and smote the woods,
And the brown fields were herbless, and the shades,
That met above the merry rivulet,
Were spoiled, I sought, I loved them still; they seemed
Like old companions in adversity.

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