Dorothy Wordsworth vs Charlotte Smith and Anna L Barbauld

After comparing the three poems together I can see small bits of consistency between Dorothy’s poem and Anna’s poem but not with Charlotte’s. Dorothy writes of a time and place where she experienced pleasure. She makes you want to go on her journey with her. As she is being “Lured by a little winding path, I quitted soon the public road, a smooth and tempting path it was, by sheep and shepherds trod.” She lures her readers to come follow down this tempting path with her. She wants to share this beautiful picture. In one way it can also be an escape from the pain and sorrows that Smith and Barbauld write about. Do not linger on the pain and destruction that Britain is experiencing, but behold the beauty that it has to offer instead.

With Smith’s poem it is sad and dreary. “Here by his native stream, at such an hour, Pity’s own Otway I methinks could meet, And hear his deep sighs swell the sadden’d wind!” It sounds like she could meet the same sad fate of pity and sorrow and she is asking melancholy to soothe her mind and take away the pain. At the beginning of her poem it sounds like she enjoys the sadness of nature, maybe because she can relate to it. “I love to listen to the hollow sighs, Thro’ the half-leafless wood that breathes the gale:” The poem  brings an opposite feeling from the poem by Wordsworth.

The poem by Barbauld kind of brings the two other poems together in a way. She talks about the good things about Britain, but than asks what has Britain done by destroying what was once good and is now just sad and hopeless. “Glad Nature pours the means–the joys of life; in vain with orange-blossoms scents the gale,” the good,  “Man calls to Famine, nor invokes in vain, Disease and Rapine follow in her train; The tramp of marching hosts disturbs the plough,” the not so good. Barbauld is stuck in the middle of the other two. She focuses on everything rather than just the beautiful or just the sad, regardless that what Barbauld is talking about is more political.

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