Comparing The Daffodils by William Wordsworth and Miracle on St. David's Day by Gillian Clarke

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Comparing The Daffodils by William Wordsworth and Miracle on St. David's Day by Gillian Clarke

In this essay I will attempt to compare two very contrasting poems, William Wordsworth’s `The Daffodils' which was written in pre 1900s and Gillian Clarke’s ‘Miracle on St David's Day’, written in the 20th century. Strangely enough Gillian Clarke’s ‘Miracle on St David's day’ was actually inspired by ‘The Daffodils’. In 1804 William Wordsworth wrote ‘a masterpiece’, two years after his experience with the daffodils, while the poem “Miracle on St. David’s Day” was written by Gillian Clarke around 1980, one hundred and seventy-six years after The Daffodils was.

Wordsworth was born on 7 April 1770 in
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In ‘The Daffodils’ Wordsworth is ‘wandering like a cloud’, but the mental patients are described as ‘not seeing, not feeling’ in Clarke’s poem; conveying that they are trapped in their own bodies and are trying to get out.

The insanity of all of these inmates in Clarke’s is not dangerous, except for the beautiful chestnut haired boy who is schizophrenic, ‘on a good day’ and this shows the reader that looks aren’t always everything. They are trapped in their world of absences with no escape. In this poem, it is the rhythms of poetry that cures the dumb man. However, 'The Daffodils' describes the power of the actual flower to cure Wordsworth's '…vacant or pensive mood…' The significance of the actual flower differs in the two poems. Wordsworth bases his whole poem on them, whereas Clarke bases her poem on Wordsworth's poem-Wordsworth is Clarke’s inspiration and this is evident in her poem, as her opening line is a quote from Wordsworth’s poem.

The poems connect in that they are both describing an event where a memory lifts the characters spirits’ and in a way, cures them. Also contrasting with 'Miracle on St. David's Day' there is a sense of freedom in 'Daffodils'. The easy atmosphere, pleasant surroundings of nature and the movement of the flowers give this effect. Movement
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