Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey by William Wordsworth: Essay Analysis

William Wordsworth, in several of his creations, foresees quite a few common metaphorical works, such as the perception of abstraction; a work that can possibly be discerned in his Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey. Wordsworth presents a fascinating statement of the concrete importance of abstracting or time-preserving his memories of those countless moments when his rural, outlandish, peaceful recollections of the Wye River Valley had strengthened and supported him throughout the five previous years when he had lived in an apparently harsh, dissonant, and quite monotonous urban scenery. By means of time-preserving, Wordsworth can ‘store’ those prized experiences, carrying ‘preserved’ bliss and serenity to other places and circumstances largely deficient of these attributes.

First, Wordsworth sensed a powerful desire to preserve time, packaging it, and stocking it up for a time when the circumstances in his life would not give the happiness or delight he gets from trips in rustic Wye River Valley and the Lake District. Thinking about his time ‘stocks’, he ponders (Wordsworth 1832, 100):
These beauteous forms,
Through a long absence, have not been to me
As is a landscape to a blind man’s eye:
But oft, in lonely rooms, and ‘mid the din
Of towns and cities, I have owed to them
In hours of weariness, sensations sweet,
Felt in the blood, and felt along with the heart;
And passing even into my purer mind,
With tranquil restoration

Second, the colorful time ‘stocks’ had strengthened the deteriorating will of Wordsworth in the dull of a colorless gloomy urban frost (Wordsworth 1832, 101):
In darkness and amid the many shapes
Of joyless daylight; when the fretful stir
Unprofitable, and the fever of the world,
Have hung upon the beatings of my heart—
How oft, in spirit, have I turned to thee,
O sylvan Wye! Thou wanderer thro’ the woods,
How often has my spirit turned to thee!

Preserving time aid Wordsworth in sustaining psychological and emotional wellbeing, strengthening him in difficult times. Conscious of the likelihood of extended intervals between emotional and psychological rejuvenation, Wordsworth sense an impulse to produce time ‘stocks’ that will support him in the future.

Third, Wordsworth displays a wholehearted understanding that his wellbeing has considerably changed throughout the years, yet the preserved memories from experiences have sustained the intensity and freshness of the first assessments. Luckily, time-preserving allows people to maintain a connection while possibly getting pleasure from something vividly, like what Wordsworth had achieved in witnessing himself, or witnessing his previous responses, in the point of view of Dorothy, his sister (Wordsworth 1832, 103):
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. Oh! Yet a little while
May I behold in thee what I was once,
My dear, dear Sister!

As proven by Wordsworth, our reserves of memories can make our current views more pleasant and optimistic. The grownup Wordsworth did not stop experiencing a deep sense of happiness, but devoid of the recklessness of adolescence or the desire-motivated satisfaction of a young adult, he, as a matured person, feels a peaceful presence of the transcendent fostered by the perfected capabilities of reflection and thought.


Wordsworth, William. The Poetical Works of William Wordsworth. London: A& R Spottiswoode, 1832.

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