6. Examine the nature of memory in Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poems.
Samuel Taylor Coleridge 21 October 1772 – 25 July 1834 was an English poet, Romantic, literary critic and philosopher who, withhis friend William Wordsworth, was a founder of the Romantic Movement in England and a member of the Lake Poets.
One of the major themes that Coleridge uses in his works is the power of memorythrough senses. It is also explain in the Preface of Lyrical Ballad written by his friend William Wordsworth.
In “Frost at Midnight” one of his most important poems, we see how through his senses he isable to join Present, Past and Future and that is possible thanks to memory, perception and imagination. As romantic poet Coleridge stands out these abilities which are part of the humankind. From thebeginning to the end Coleridge is describing time, the title “Frost at Midnight” places us in a specific moment in time, it is night. This is the most inspiring moment in a day, when the silent comesand we can contemplate the world in solitude. The poet is alone in connection with nature, which is also an important thing in Romantic poetry, “an extreme silentness. Sea, hill and wood,” He feelscold and also “frozen” means that the time is stopped. In that atmosphere the poet is using perception which will transport him to different place and different time. In verse 15 the poem says: “onlythat film, which flattered on the gate” a physical thing makes that the poet think about his life, then the poem continues: “whose puny flaps and freaks the idling Spirit/ by its own moods interprets,every where/ Echo or mirror seeking of itself./ and makes a toy of Thought:” he interprets that action as an action in his life. Everyone can interpret things in a different way, senses are the samebut experience isn’t the same. Our reaction is based in our life or how we see the world.
In the same room we have two different generations, father and son, present and past. He is seeing his son...
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