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Common Depth

July 30, 2007

I suppose that simplicity speaks most profoundly to my heart. Perhaps the complexity of things loses me in some capacity, nonetheless I am impressed. However, something about the beauty of simplicty draws near to my soul–especially when a deeper meaning surfaces.

Passing through a thrift store in Michigan I picked up this old 1963 Enlgand in Literature textbook. I find myself appreciating the lyrics of Wordsworth as he “creates beauty from simple and commonplace things.” As the text describes, he was “a thrifty, retentive, and vigorously active mind, firmly anchored in the actual and familiar.”

One poem really struck me with delight:

382. To the Skylark
William Wordsworth (1770–1850)

ETHEREAL minstrel! pilgrim of the sky!
Dost thou despise the earth where cares abound?
Or while the wings aspire, are heart and eye
Both with thy nest upon the dewy ground?
Thy nest which thou canst drop into at will, 5
Those quivering wings composed, that music still!
To the last point of vision, and beyond
Mount, daring warbler!—that love-prompted strain
—’Twixt thee and thine a never-failing bond—
Thrills not the less the bosom of the plain: 10
Yet might’st thou seem, proud privilege! to sing
All independent of the leafy Spring.
Leave to the nightingale her shady wood;
A privacy of glorious light is thine,
Whence thou dost pour upon the world a flood 15
Of harmony, with instinct more divine;
Type of the wise, who soar, but never roam—
True to the kindred points of Heaven and Home.

What’s profound about his poetry appears that the simple soon transforms into great substance of reflection and enlightenment.

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