Monday, February 7, 2011

Shelley responses


  1. Stanzas Written In Dejection:
    Shelly uses a lot of natural imagery in this poem, particularly the first two stanzas. He talks of clear skies and and snowy mountains and unexpanded buds. The imagery is calm and peaceful. However the overall emotion of the poem is quiet different. The narrator has "neither hope nor health,/nor peace within nor calm around." The tone is sad and lonely.
    Callie Stribling, Period 6

  2. Stanzas Written in Dejection
    The first two stanzas of Shelley's poem are stuffed with romantic imagery. From the "dancing" waves (personification), to the "green and purple seaweeds strown," Shelley creates a beautiful setting. But at the end of the second stanza, the tone of the poem shifts dramatically. The narrator is consumed with loneliness for the fact that he/she cannot share this natural marvel with anyone else. The narrator lacks "hope," "health," "peace," and "calm." By the end of the poem these feelings have driven the narrator to the thought of death, and "weep[ing] away the life of care." The poem is romantic because it is driven on nature and human emotion, and with personification and intense imagery, Shelley creates a poem that triggers an intensely sorrowful state of mind from readers.
    Thomas Massad, Period 7

  3. Percy Bysshe Shelley- “Stanzas Written in Dejection- December 1818, Near Naples”

    This poem uses two quintessential elements of Romantic poetry, love or human feeling, and nature or natural imagery. The poem breaks up the two aspects, the first half loaded with imagery, and the second half filled with emotion. The tone of the poem shifts in the end of the second stanza (beginning of the third) when Shelley transitions from phrases like “How sweet!” to “I have nor hope nor health,/ Nor peace within nor calm around”. The natural imagery in the beginning is of a warm sun, clear sky and “waves… dancing fast and bright” which gives the reader a joyous yet peaceful tone, and makes the dramatic tone shift even more poignant. There is also a shift of content in the poem, the first two stanzas are describing the scenic view whereas the latter three stanzas are speaking of her painful emotions, and little imagery is mentioned.

    Gabby McRoberts 7th

  4. Stanzas Written in Dejection, Near Naples

    Elements of romanticism are evident in this poem through the detailed descriptions of nature and the melancholy feelings portrayed by the writer. The first few lines of the poem all begin with an element of nature and then describe it in several short words. This creates an upbeat rhythm that draws the reader in and sets a light tone. Towards the middle of the poem, the author proclaims that despite the endless beauty in the world, she is not happy. This represents a classic example of romanticism because the author is talking about how miserable the world is despite the beauty and she discusses her depressing feelings and emotions. As I first begin to read the poem I feel lighthearted because of the tone and beat, but as it becomes more about emotions a sense of unease settles in.- Mimi Strauss, 8th period

  5. My Response:
    The poem “Stanzas Written in Dejection – December 1818, Near Naples” starts out with a cheerful tone that made me feel like dancing along with the waves in the poem (3) or singing a song for I was filled with joy and warmth. It is a Romantic introduction as well, for Shelley uses the term “unexpanded buds”. Usually, one would think that in Nature, as the spread of new life ran its course, especially in the wonderful weather depicted by Shelley in the introduction to his poem, earthly buds would go beyond expanding and blossom into wonderful flowers or fruit, but because of Nature's unexpected course, they didn't expand after all. After Shelley's cheerful introduction, he takes a darker turn, however, and starts to state the downsides and more gloomy areas of his surroundings. He states that happiness is more important that wealth, yet to him it is unobtainable, pushing him farther and farther away from happiness in the end. At the conclusion of his poem, he uses the simile that death is like sleep, finally taking his life and causing him to live under the state of eternal slumber, never finding true happiness.

    My Dad's Response:
    Shelley connects us to nature by making us feel its joy, beauty and splendor in the first two stanzas, only to make a transition to despair in the last two stanzas. The connection to nature is also there in these stanzas, but the author’s fear of looming death, whether by disease or his own hand, causes him to associate with the darker, tamer and colder side of nature. It is not clear why the wondrous aspects of nature are presented, only to be overcome by the later depression; perhaps the author wants us to feel what it was like before the unfortunate circumstances overtook his life. There is also a sense in the third stanza that nothing good (no hope or health) has come to him in this life, and there is bitterness about how the fortunes of others has passed him by. The third stanza removes us from the magnificence of nature, and the last stanza shows nature slowing down to match the author’s gloom. Now instead of waves “dancing fast and bright,” there is a monotony of the waves and mild wind and water that match his slow downward spiral.
    Emily Johanning, period 6

  6. Stanzas Written in Dejection

    The opening stanzas had a calm, soft feeling and then the connotative diction such as "weep away the life of care" suggests a transformation into a more depressing tone. Shelley reflects on his life seeming unsatisfied. He uses a loose rhyming pattern. The sudden abrupt statements such as "How sweet!" and "Alas" prepares the reader for the change in feeling. The imagery in the beginning greatly increases the romantic aspect of nature. The latter stanzas describe Shelley's wishes to have been able to change her past.

    Makala K

  7. Christina Clemens - Period 8
    "Stanzas Written in Dejection----December 1818, Near Naples"

    The description and imagery that flow through the entire poem exemplify why this is a Romantic poem. Nature is stressed and focused on so much in this poem, it is hard to define what lines are about nature and which ones are focusing on the pure emotion and feeling. In this poem, they blend in to one, in a very harmonious manner. Even if you couldn't define it line by line, it didn't quite matter. You could still take something from it, and that's why I enjoyed it.

  8. On "Stanzas Written in Dejection - December 1818 near Naples"
    Will Whitehurst, 7th Period

    Right off the bat, Shelley uses descriptive and beautifully done naturalist imagery that is a hallmark of the Romantic movement's literature. Pretty much every major landscape, from bright fields to the depths of the sea, juxtaposes with other Romantic sentiments about human emotion through the first half. The second half, on the other hand, complements a more businesslike portrait of humanity with statements ridden with despair. A wide range of both can certainly be found throughout this poem, from happiness through lines such as "How sweet, did any heart now share in my emotion," to melancholy in lines like "To me, that cup has been dealt in another measure." To me, very few poems can shift emotional and physical states this well. It's no easy task to go from gleaming images of a beach to a critical scene of humanity, and subsequently from happy to morose, in just a heartbeat.

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  10. David Liu, period 3
    "Stanzas Written in Dejection -- December 1818, near Naples"

    The flowing manner of this poem portrays both the ups and downs of nature. In the first and second stanzas, Shelley's interprets the earth as beautiful place, because "the waves are dancing fast and bright," in his mind. As we reach the third stanza, he "ha[s] nor hope nor health, nor peace within nor calm around." In just two stanzas his entire point of view switches into viewing the dissonance of nature. He disagrees to those who "call life pleasure", because his "cup has been dealt in another measure." There is no joy to be found in his life. However, by the fourth and final stanza, the harmony of dissonance comes together, because even though "despair itself is mild / I could lie down like a tired child, and weep away the life of care."

  11. Stanzas Written in Dejection--December 1818, near Naples
    Mo Quinn, period 3

    This poem exhibits the classic romanticism elements. Its natural setting is overly described with wistful adjectives ("dancing" waves), lots of lonely banter is included, and an overall moody tone. One thing I enjoyed about this poem is that it seemed to be more about the nature soothing than inciting pain over love. Although the narrator claims to have no "health or hope", he finds solace in nature. He gives this feeling of solace to the readers through descriptive adjectives that conjure up images of peaceful nature.

  12. Stanzas Written in Dejection
    Shelley’s beautiful description of nature in the first two stanzas of the poem gives way to hopelessness by poem’s end. We can almost follow his descent into despair as he begins with imagery from on high – clear skies and a warm sun – and then follow along as he moves down the horizon to beautiful waves and finally to the sands upon which he sits alone. Once he leaves the imagery of things bigger than himself and turns inward, his mood is increasingly dark. He has lost hope and health, has no peace or calm. By the final stanza, the once-warm sun is now setting on Shelley, literally and perhaps figuratively. We’re left to ponder whether the despair he is feeling will result in a final, deep sleep.

    Thomas Massad’s mom, LaDonna

  13. Stanzas Written in Dejection near Naples, by P. B. Shelley

    As the title implies, there is a dejected romantic feeling eminating from this poem. It heavily uses imagery of nature, one of the tenents of romantic writing, in each of the four stanzas. The first stanza does nothing but paint a picture of a beach, where "the sun is warm, the sky is clear, the waves are dancing fast and bright." The third stanza breaks this theme saying "Alas! I have nor hope nor health." This sudden exclamation of depression leads to a somewhat dejected feeling for the rest of the poem, concluding with the Author's "dying brain [and] its last monotony."

    - Lane Kolbly, 7

  14. Stanzas Written in Dejection—December 1818, Near Naples

    This poem uses contrasting images to describe the turmoil occurring in Shelley’s mind. The first stanzas describe nature in great detail – warm air, waves … dancing, green and purple seaweeds. Shelley then writes of the pain in his own life and wishes he could lie down like a child and weep away his cares. The language in the poem is very descriptive and leaves the reader feeling sad that a person cannot find happiness even in such a beautiful natural setting.
    Suzanne Alston, Annalee’s mother

  15. "Stanzas Written in Dejection--December 1818, Near Naples"

    The poem's tone starts out with a very bright, happy setting that uses a lot of imagery to portray a paradise-like location in the first stanza. That stanza is a metaphor of life, trying to show that life is a warm place. Later on in the poem, the scenery becomes cold and there are winds blowing. This stanza represents death and the sadness it brings on the person who is dying and loved ones. The reason the poem is Romantic is because it fills itself with lots of emotion and imagination. It is Romantic because it goes beyond life and deals with the unknown void of death. I really liked the poem because it started with a portrayal of a paradise, but it just as easily manages to make me feel sadness at the concept of death and the effects it brings on people.

    -Abdulkarim Bora, Period 3

  16. "Stanzas..." by Percy B. Shelley

    A few separate notes:
    First, Romanticism. Shelley certainly uses natural imagery in the early stanzas of the poem, and this continues throughout, if in smaller quantities. Although there is scenery, the moods of Shelley and nature aren't connected. Rather, a single setting watches over a dramatic change in tone, noted by earlier comments. There isn't much about the imagination, and though Shelley is alone, this only makes him depressed because he can't share his view. This poem is Romantic in some aspects, but Shelley is- possibly deliberately- doing the exact opposite of others.

    Second, literary devices. My favorite is probably "Yet now despair itself is mild", which is on the one hand referring to mild despair, but at the same time is somewhat an oxymoron, as well as being linked to climate.

    Third, my emotional response: does Romantic poetry have to be so depressing? Still, at least the despair is mild. I dread reading Shelley's poems that he wrote in severe despair.

    Last, an Ostrichist analysis. The first stanzas of the poem show the beauty of life. Next, though, the formerly Ostrichist Shelley rejects it. He announces that he is feeling a general emotion that one must describe as malaise. As a result, he goes dangerously close to being an anti-Ostrichist. He rejects Ostrichism specifically, but at the end of the poem realizes that mistake. He agrees that the day was good and the poem was an "untimely moan". This shows the general trend of anti-Ostrichism: it is not a true psychological movement, but rather a product of psychological imbalance.

  17. Hannah Rieden
    Period 1
    Stanzas Written in Dejection Near Naples
    The poem starts out expressing a peaceful, calm feeling, but as it progresses leads into a discussion of the poet's loneliness. Shelley's tone completely shifts from upbeat lines such as "the sun is warm, the sky is clear/The waves are dancing fast and bright" to depressing lines like "Alas! I have nor hope nor health,/Nor peace within nor calm around," that suggest she has given up hope. This poem discusses a major component of romantic poetry: love. Shelley says "for I am one/Whom men love not," which indicates that she has given up on love. She then goes on to compare the previously described day to her dismal love life. The imagery used throughout the poem helps to get the point across in that it emphasizes what Shelley wants to say. The strong imagery words used in the beginning help to bring across the nature Shelley wants the reader to see. The imagery Shelley uses in the end, like "My cheek grow cold, and hear the sea/Breathe o'er my dying brain its last monotony" help to emphasize the change in tone, and the poet's loneliness.

  18. Despair indeed. Shelley starts his poem with a beautiful setting along the coast of Naples. The descriptions of the sun, sky, wind and all seem so serene and content. Stanza two introduces a bit of chaos and hopelessness with things being thrown, strown and the author being all alone. The environment begins to show human-like characteristics and behaviors. Stanza three really shows the depth of the author’s despair and the aforementioned serenity and content go right out the window. The author seems to be ready to surrender to the depths of his anguish and at the end, laying down amongst the waters to be swept away. His loneliness overshadows the magnificence of his surroundings. This poem uses many elements of Romanticism, the association of human moods with the whims of our environment and setting a scene of initial beauty which then contrasts with the true harshness of the forces of nature.

    Elizabeth B's mom

  19. For "Stanzas written in Dejection", Shelley talks about how nature can be beautiful and comforting, yet at the same time be wild and untamed like how he feels inside. At first it seems quiet and peaceful, but then turns to a surrounding full of tumult. He says that other people feel the pleasure of their lives, but it's not his turn to feel it now. And although he could just sit there and cry and mope about his miserable life, instead he decides to enjoy the memories of his good times. It's almost like a criticism on people who mope around while others are enjoying what life really brings.

  20. Allan Sadun, period 7, responding to "Stanzas Written in Dejection" like everybody else.

    This poem has all the hallmarks of a Romantic poem: long, windy descriptions of natural scenes, a praise for "inward glory", and an expression of the author's emotions. What's unique in it, however, is that unlike Coleridge and Wordsworth, Shelley is describing something he DOESN'T have, and I think this poem is all the more direct for it. Everybody knows that true natures are easier to see from outside, and that "you don't know what you've got until it's gone". So when Shelley tells us a long list of all the comforting feelings he doesn't have, it seems much starker than if he had told us a list of all the sad feelings he thinks he does. (As a Latin nerd, I can't help but notice how he ties his list together with anaphora and parataxis, which only makes the impact even stronger.)

    The last stanza is almost morbidly suicidal, which is absolutely the point. It almost reminds me of some of the things I told myself back in sixth grade, when I felt overworked and depressed - instead of reiterating his sadness, he talks about life as a burden that he "yet must bear". Setting the poem on a beach was the perfect choice to represent this eternal weariness, as the waves never stop while the ocean constantly rests.