Wordsworth , Memory and Nature

I really did not get into Wordsworth until I encountered professor David Pitt in English 405 at Memorial University many years ago.

But I remember it well. The course was to be the Romantic Poets of Blake , Coleridge, Keats , Shelley and Byron. And of course Wordsworth . Well Dr. Pitt realy liked Wordsworth ‘s poetry and so thankfully an inordinate amount of time was devoted to his poetry . I remember on one occasion that Dr. Pitt introduced Wordsworth’s ‘Prelude ‘ by saying that if he was to be stranded on an island but was given the decision of one book of poetry to have with him ,  it would be the ‘Prelude. ‘

Memory plays a big part in Wordsworh’s philosophy . Note the  latter part of his Daffodils poem

‘For oft when on my couch I lie in vacant or in pensive mood

They flash upon the inward eye

Which is the bliss of solitude

And then my heart with pleasure fills

And dances with the daffodils .’

Such is the case when we remember moments in nature .

For me?

I am struck when I see the sunrise because I remember a brilliant July morning on placid St Lewis Bay, Labrador , in a small punt setting my first ever salmon net .

This was matched the next morning , if not surpassed , by an equally glorious sunrise  made all the more memorable when hauling the net I caught the silvery glow of that wonderful fish ,  in all eighteen of them in this first historic haul .

Gliding into the harbour a hour or so later , I swelled with complete satisfaction –my heart with pleasure fills .

I was sure at that moment that I had my fortune.

And remembering now , you know , I did!





4 thoughts on “Wordsworth , Memory and Nature

  1. Hi A. Brian,

    Indeed you did have a fortune, sir. Boyhood experiences all tend to become guilded with time of course, but out around Western Point hauling the salmon net and a few lobster pots is a rich memory by any measure.

    Hope all is well,


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    Dennis Knight, CMC, MCIP, Tourism, Economic Development and Community Planning Consultant

    Certified Management Consultant and Member, Canadian Institute of Planners

    P.O. Box 23146, St. John’s, NL, Canada, A1B 4J9

    http://www.dwknightassociates.com, 709 690-3020


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