This poem compared to Spring is slower and quieter, solemn and quite lethargic. Autumn uses long extended sentences, long vowels and many enjambments while Spring uses shorter, quicker phrases, short vowels and many alliterations, which means that the Spring poem is a lot more lively to read. The Autumn poem is also considerably longer than Spring so that it gives more detail to every aspect of Autumn. The Skating Poem by William Wordsworth was part of a large book of poetry called ‘The Prelude’.
This poem is written as though it is meant as a Boys Poem because Wordsworth wrote this as if he was still a child. The poem starts off in a very positive, exciting and noisy way, however by the second stanza, the atmosphere changes to the complete opposite. Wordsworth begins the poem with him as a boy in ‘the frosty season, when the sun was set’ (Line 1 / 2). He tells us that he is looking at his cottage and that all the windows are frosted up and that he doesn’t want to go in, ‘I heeded not the summons’ (Line 4).
He continues to talk about how excited and happy he is and he says that he feels ‘Proud and exulting, like an untired horse’ (Line 8). Wordsworth uses an onomatopoeic word to describe what he was doing, ‘We hiss’d along the polished iced’ (Line 10). This phrase, with its use of assonance, helps us imagine the sound and the images that he saw when he was there. He talks about feeling like he does when he goes hunting. In Wordsworth’s time, hunting was very prevalent so using this image, he can think of excitement and the feeling of not knowing what is going to happen next.
Throughout the poem he uses similes to help describe the wintry images to us and to allow us to see what he saw when he was a child, such as ‘every ice crag / Tinkled like iron’ (Line 17). There are many enjambments throughout the poem which, as in Hopkin’s Spring, makes the poem continuous and fast paced, and this allows the reader understand the excitement that he felt when he was a child. The second stanza is slower than the first as the atmosphere changes from him being happy and excited, to being quiet and lonely.
The images are darker and full of shadows. From being the most important thing in the first stanza, he is suddenly very small and insignificant in the second. He is kneeling on the ice and the cliffs seem to be whirling round him as he is dizzy, and he talks about watching the night get darker and the ice get quieter until he is the only one left, writing ‘I stood and watch’d / Till all was tranquil as a dreamless sleep. ‘ (Line 37/38).
This poem I think is a mixture of both Spring and Autumn poems in the way it uses structure, atmosphere and imagery. Wordsworth’s poem begins in a happy, positive and exciting way just like Spring, using short phrases, short vowels and exciting words, however in the second stanza it gets slower and quieter, and uses long sentences and long vowels in a similar way to Autumn. My favourite poem out of the three I have chosen is Spring by G. M Hopkins.
This is because it is a very fast moving and happy poem which describes all the best bits about Spring and gives a feeling of excitement and optimism as the season promises to move into a hot and bright summer from a cold, dark winter. I like how Hopkins talks about the innocence of Spring and how he compares it to the garden of Eden and also how he talks about the beauty of the season, using interesting alliteration and happy, cheerful images of new life.