1. William Wordsworth’s poem, “She dwelt among the untrodden ways” deals with a woman who lives unnoticed and apart from the rest of the world. She is a woman the speaker loves.The figurative language that indicates this is in his first line, “She dwelt among the untrodden ways” (1). Wordsworth does not mean by “untrodden” that no one ever went to the place the maiden lived, but it implies a rural place that is not alongside any main road. He calls her “A violet by a mossy stone/ Half hidden from the eye!” (5). She is not really a violet, but figuratively like one. To the poet, he sees her as a hidden treasure that he finds while walking in the less disturbed parts of nature. The lines “—Fair as a star, when only one/ Is shining in the sky” are interesting. Figuratively, he sees her as having a bright, star-like, shining beauty. However, any star could look beautiful if it were the only one shining in the sky. Maybe she would not be so beautiful if taken from her rural home and placed among many more beautiful maidens.
2. The poem “Pied Beauty” is full of examples of how the sound of words makes a poem flow. There is rhyme, like the words that end lines one and four, “things” and “wings.” These are also examples of perfect rhyme and end rhyme. In line two, “couple-colour” and “cow” are an example of slant rhyme using the “c” sound. Line three has another example of slat rhyme with the “o” sound in “rose-moles.” There is a lot of alliteration, such as in line two, “couple” “colour,” and “cow” begin with the letter “c.” In line nine, the letter “s” is used with the words “swift,” “slow,” “sweet,” and “sour.” Anaphora is found in lines two and three which both begin with the word “for.” Assonance is found in line two, with the words “couple” and “colour” both having the “uh” sound.
3. “The black and small birds of remorse” is a free verse poem in the concrete form, which means the shape of the poem is important to the meaning of the poem. Most of the first part of the poem has enjambment, because sentences and phrases are broken up to continue into the next line. For example, the first four lines together are one sentence, but they are broken up by the form of the poem into separate parts. Lines five and six show end-stopping, because each line is a complete phrase.
4. The poems “The Sick Rose,” “A Poison Tree,” and “The Human Abstract” present a very dark side of life from William Blake. In “The Sick Rose,” the speaker is a person who is trying to do the impossible, to let the “rose” know that the love she enjoys secretly has attracted an “invisible worm” which is killing her. It is not really a literal poem about a rose, but about secret lovers. Worms, like maggots, are things that come to eat rotting or dead things. This poem deals with dishonesty in love and its bad results. In “The Poison Tree,” the speaker is a man who thinks about what happens when he does not deal with his feelings of anger. These angry feelings, when kept inside and hidden, grow and become destructive. It is interesting that the anger does not result in self-destruction, but the speaker says, “In the morning glad I see/ My foe outstretched beneath the tree” (15-16). Instead, he destroys someone else, and seems happy about it, which feels very evil and dark. This poem is about the damaging things that occur when angry feelings are kept inside. “The Human Abstract” is a much more complex poem than the others. It seems that the poet believes that selfish love leads to cruelty, and the cruelty is personified as “He sits down with his holy fears,/ And waters the ground with tears” (7-8). It seems as if Blake is criticizing people who think they are holy and religion as being things that lead to “dismal shade” and “Deceit” (13, 17). While many people see mercy, love, and humility as positive things, Blake sees them as dangers resulting from selfishness that lead to unhappiness. In general, the three poems deal with the idea of deception, both of one’s self and of others, and the problems that it causes.