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Transcript of Lucy Gray
-It was written during the French Revolution.
-It was a rough winter with severe frost and frequent, heavy snow falls.
-Based on a true event.
The mood of this poem is sadness caused by her death.
The poem tells of how Lucy wanders into the storm and never reaches town.
Her parents begin searching. They follow her footprints to a bridge where in the middle her footprints suddenly stop and they know their daughter is dead.
-Alliteration (“and sings a solitary song”)
-Imagery (“powdery snow”)
-Simile (“Her feet disperse the powdery snow, that rises up like smoke.”)
-Euphemism(“In heaven we shall meet”)
by William Wordsworth Life Wordsworth was surrounded by snow and Dorothy’s (his sister) memory of a real incident that happened at Halifax.
Written in 1798. Reason Wordsworth wrote this poem to evoke some kind of catholic judgment. He wanted the reader to be able to compare the real event with a slightly fictional one and enhance their sensibilities. He also could’ve written it to represent the forces of nature being too great for human control.
Connotation -Fawn: Young deer/To bring forth young (Could represent young Lucy being a part of nature.)
-Blither: Happy and cheerful/Without regard (She didn’t regard the mountain which may have already had snow on it. Could have prevented her from trying to get to town.)
-Wanton: Done unjustifiably/uncalled for/luxurious/style (Wanton and Stroke both describe the style and movement of the way she walked through the snow. It gives description and imagery.)
-Stroke: Sudden movement/A light touch or caress
Connotation cont. -Wide: Broad/Great range/Utmost/Fully (When her parents were searching they looked at a great range and “fully” searched for their daughter. It could be interpreted either way.)
-Guide: To assist/A mark, person or animal (There was no person to be found out in the snow including their daughter nor would they be assisted in their search. Shows the setting is very isolated.)
-Edge: Brink or verge/ To advance gradually (They went to the hill’s edge which could either mean they were going to the edge of the hill or they were advancing slowly maybe scared of what they may find.)
-Plank: long, flat piece of wood/Something to stand on or cling to for support. (The imagery of the plank shows the setting of her death but it also stands for what she may have clung to for support through the storm. This may also be a support for the parents to remember their daughter now that she’s gone.)
Imagery Wordsworth describes the setting on a “wide moor” where you may see young deer and other animals on the fields. By stating that young animals can be seen it can be inferred that they may represent Lucy connected to the wild. To describe the oncoming storm he mentions the “minister-clock has just struck two/And yonder is the moon!” It was believed that when the moon was seen early in the day a storm was on its way. He describes the “powdery snow” that’s already on the ground and adds more imagery by recounting how, when she walked, the snow looked like smoke around her feet. Talking about smoke gives the scene an eerie feeling about what may happen and could potentially foreshadow bad things. After the storm her parents go searching for her and Wordsworth uses a lot of imagery to describe where they’re looking. For example, the “bridge of wood, a furlong from their door” or “through the broken hawthorn hedge, and by the long stone-wall,” both are describing the setting of the moor. By listing all the places they searched he gives a desperate vibe to the audience that can be especially felt by parents.
Sources London in the 1790's. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Mar. 2013. <http://cai.ucdavis.edu/waters-sites/ london1790s/>.
"Lucy Gray." Wikipedia. Wikipedia. Web. 26 Mar. 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Lucy_Gray>.
"Lucy Gray [or Solitude]." All Poetry. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Mar. 2013. <http://allpoetry.com/poem/ 8452819-Lucy_Gray_or_Solitude-by-William_Wordsworth>.
Meteorology @ West Moors. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Mar. 2013. <http://booty.org.uk/booty.weather/ climate/1750_1799.htm>.
Analysis Lucy Gray was written based off of an actual event of a child being lost, though in this story her body is never found. With this being said, in the first stanza he is hoping that while he’s out in the woods he may see this lost child that he’s heard of. In the second stanza he begins to give a short description of Lucy as well as her surroundings. “No mate, no comrade Lucy knew; She dwelt on a wide moor,” means that she lived in such solitary she had no friends nor did she know anybody else. The third stanza tells how the story ends by telling the reader that “the sweet face of Lucy Gray will never more be seen,” meaning that she is gone forever which implies that she is dead. The fourth and fifth stanza is dialog between Lucy and her father discussing the oncoming storm. It is the beginning of the story of her death. In stanza five, when Lucy says “the minister-clock has just struck two, and yonder is the moon,” she is describing how it was believed that when the moon is visible during the early afternoon, there is a storm approaching. After stanza six, the storm is on its way and the first line of stanza seven means that the mountain was ignored. This which could most likely mean that the storm was visible on the mountain had Lucy checked before leaving. Stanza eight tells of the storm coming earlier than expected. This stanza also tells of her wandering and climbing of hills because of the storm. She then gets lost in the woods while trying to reach her mother in town. Stanza nine tells of her parents realizing that Lucy is missing and the start of their search in the snow. After Lucy’s parents realize that she’s missing they begin their search. In stanza nine, the first two lines are describing where they are on the moor. Also by saying that it is “day-break,” that would mean that they had been searching all night for Lucy. In this stanza after her parents notice the wooden bridge they lose hope and in the tenth stanza they accept her death and say that they will meet again in heaven. At the end of stanza ten though, her mother sees Lucy’s footprints and regains her hope as they begin their search again in the eleventh stanza. In the eleventh stanza Wordsworth mentions the “hill’s edge” and “broken hawthorn hedge” which may symbolize the mothers’ emotions at the time. In the twelfth stanza the parents track the footprints to the bridge that was previously mention. This bridge brings back bad feelings of lost hope and dread. In stanza thirteen, the dread has become sorrow when they see the footprints have stopped. In this stanza Wordsworth uses the word “plank” and though it may seem it is just referring to a piece of wood, it could also be considered a support for which one may cling to. Stanzas fourteen and fifteen, Wordsworth describes the legend Lucy has left behind as some believe that she is still out there wondering in the woods singing a lonely song that seems like a whistle in the wind.