Celebrating Spring with William Wordsworth

“Come forth into the light of things. Let nature be your teacher.”

William Wordsworth

William Wordsworth is one of the most beloved poets of all time. Born in Cumbria, England in 1870, he lived during the Romantic Period of literature.  His love of nature inspired many of his poems, even as the French Revolution influenced him to come to terms with the realities and ills of society and life.

William Wordsworth enjoyed walking and would take pen and scraps of paper with him to record ideas for poems.  According to Thomas de Quincey, English writer, essayist, and literary critic, William Wordsworth walked an estimated 180,000 miles during his lifetime, strolling around his beloved Lake District. His walks at night set tongues wagging in his community and some thought that he might be a spy for the French Government.

Join me in reciting, “The World is Too Much With Us” by William Wordsworth.

The World is Too Much With Us

By William Wordsworth

The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;—
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
It moves us not. Great God! I’d rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathèd horn.

Published by Rebecca Budd

Lifestyle Blogger, Visual Storyteller, Podcaster, Traveler and Life-long Learner

46 thoughts on “Celebrating Spring with William Wordsworth

    1. I am so excited to hear that you recited “The World is Too Much With Us” as well. My hope is that others will be inspired to recite poetry and feel the energy of the spoken word. Several years ago I started reading poetry out loud to an empty room. A couple of years later, I started to recite poetry in nature. There is a marvelous sense of sharing words that have come from the past and still gives joy in the present. Many thanks for stopping by and for you comments.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Many thanks for stopping by Rudi and reciting William Wordsworth poem with me. I believe that William Wordsworth’s understanding of nature influenced the “greatness” of his poetry. I read that his travels to France and Switzerland as well as his interest in politics was another influence. I often think of poets at old, sitting at a desk writing poetry by candlelight. I forget that the romantic poets were once young and fully engaged in the world and happenings around them.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Oddly, despite having done English A Level at school, I’ve never studied Wordsworth. And it’s taken me until recently to appreciate the Romantic poets. I couldn’t get beyond what I saw as their sentimentality. Luckily, I’ve become more open to them in my old age. And I think you have a very valid point about the value of reciting poetry out loud, wherever you choose to do it.

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    1. I confess that I have come late to poetry and am making up for lost time. In my high school years, it seemed that we spent more time dissecting poetry than understanding the nuance of message. Poetry was more of a task than a joy. While I recognize that we should understand the basics of poetry, I believe that the essence of poetry is the essential part. Poetry allows us to explore ideas and places that we may have otherwise overlooked – universal themes that forge a greater connection with ourselves, others and the world around us.

      Many thanks for your visit and for your comments – truly appreciated, Margaret.

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      1. You’re quite right. Analysing the construction, teasing out the way the poet had/hadn’t followed the rules was the order of the day – aagh! How it spoke to you, and what it spoke of wasn’t part of the picture.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Wonderful pst Rebecca and you are right re its relevance still. Love your recitation. I do love Wordsworth and always loved the last bit of this poem especially. Now I must tell you though the tale of the day the mr and i visited his cottage at Grassmere. We were on holiday and coming back from some park or other with our older girl who was then 3 and we thought, ok it’s not for her but what a chance, probably our only one to see this–just a pity it is also a guided tour but hey, we will lag at the back. So this was fine till we got in the room with his roped off writing chair, which the daughter obvi wishing to be touched by greatness not only wanted to sit in but having been told, no, no, bad chair,not only insisted it was ‘ooh’ chair, as in her chair and she could sit in it, she slipped my hand, ducked under the ropes and did so. We thought we got away with it when the Mr hauled her out. But no, she then started shouting ‘Booby, booby, booby,’at the tour guide and not at the fact the woman was a booby–for which she might have been forgiven, the way she was dribbling on– as was next shown when she added, ‘That woman’s got boobies.’ Deciding we should now beat a hasty retreat, I opened this door and the three of us stepped through it—followed by the tour party all looking for that exit. Alas as this was into a walled garden with no gate, we then all of us had to step back inside to where the guide was still prattling to no-one. I don’t know if she’d even noticed we’d all gone. I tell you, talking a once in a lifetime experience, it sure was.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Oh, Shey, Don and I laughed and laughed and laughed. An unforgettable moment. I was imagining the three of you making that “hasty retreat” into a walled garden with no means of escape. YIKES! And to think that everyone followed you instead of staying with the tour guild was hilarious. Thank you for adding humour to the start of my week. Hugs and more hugs

      Liked by 3 people

      1. SO glad you laughed. it was like something out of comic cuts. But that bit where we stepped out and so did the whole tour??? Well. I guess it could be topped by having to step back in again.

        Liked by 2 people

    1. William Wordsworth was indeed a walkaholic Dave!! But I think he would still need to run to keep up with Misty. Whenever I think of poets, I envision them in old age writing at a desk. Which is far from the reality. I forget that poetry written in early age is much different than writing at an older age.

      I just discovered that William and his sister were very close all their lives. These are the lines that are in his poem on Tintern Abbey about their friendship:

      Of this fair river; thou my dearest Friend,
      My dear, dear Friend; and in thy voice I catch
      The language of my former heart, and read
      My former pleasures in the shooting lights
      Of thy wild eyes …
      My dear, dear Sister!

      I just found Dorothy Wordsworth Journals with her poetry. I continue to learn and learn and learn…

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Babsje, for your heartwarming and encouraging comments. I am hoping that I inspire others to recite poetry out loud and hear the words energize a room. What I most appreciated about William Wordsworth was his prompting to see, oversee and understand nature and its innumerable secrets. Can you imagine him walking the nature pathways with pen and paper in hand. It is a powerful image of being at one with nature. Sending hugs!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. It does indeed, Liz. I just explored Gutenberg.org for William Wordsworth’s poetry. I found that his poetry came in volumes – 8 in total. This will keep me busy reciting William Wordsworth poetry.

      Liked by 3 people

    1. What a marvelous adventure to visit the Lake District. How wonderful to walk the path where William Wordsworth walked!!! Can you imagine walking 180,000!! Thank you for your heartwarming comments, Robbie. I thought that I would start with “The World is Too Much With Us,” before going on to his longer poem, “Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey.”

      Liked by 2 people

    1. The more I look back into William Wordsworth biography, the more I realize how little I know. When I read the poets of past centuries, I imagine them as old men and women scribbling a few lines of poetry at a desk with a candle. That may be part of the reality, but certainly not all. William lived with an exuberance for words and life. I am now interested in discovering more about his collaboration with Samuel Taylor Coleridge. I continue to learn and learn…

      Liked by 2 people

      1. ‘I Wondered Lonely as a Cloud’
        I know very little about the ‘man’. However, he seemed to have such a love of nature and the joys there to be found.
        Should you write about his collaboration with Samuel Taylor Coleridge I’m sure your readers, Dear Rebecca, would find it sweet and heart quenching.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I have been exploring the friendship of Coleridge and Wordsworth especially the poetry collaboration – there is so much material to read. Exciting! I just found out that Wordsworth has a sister, Dorothy, and I just found her journals on Gutenberg.org.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. What a lovely reading of this poem, a favorite from this talented poet’s pen! I read and looked at it several times. I love the video, I even saw the birdies enjoying their flights in the branches I found it interesting that you would have studied this poem in school I did, as well. I remember the teacher’s lengthy story of the artist’s life and of his other lovely poems that he wrote. Thank you for your connecting with our world through poetry! ! And, keep those lovely videos coming for us to enjoy, as well!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am delighted that you enjoyed the poetry recitation, Frances. In my research on this poem, I discovered that William Wordsworth’s sister, Dorothy and he were close all their lives. While Dorothy had no ambitions to be a public authors, she left behind her journals, one of the that describes her tour of Scotland in 1803. I found the journal on Gutenberg Press – I am excited.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Beautiful poem.
    I love William Wordsworth. Whenever I walk through a meadow or a park, I remember “I wandered lonely as a cloud”:

    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;
    And then my heart with pleasure fills,
    And dances with the daffodils.

    Liked by 2 people

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