You are on page 1of 2

How does Rossetti convey his grief in the Woodspurge?

The Woodspurge by Dante Rossetti depicts a person in uncontrollable grief, as the only thing he sees is a wild plant called the woodspurge, and how the nature is guiding him through the poem, to find the woodspurge. His view on the journey he takes is how he conveys his grief transferring his feelings into nature. The poem s first stan!a presents a countryside and begins to suggest the narrators s state of mind. The narrator is not walking toward a specific destination" he moves in the direction the wind is blowing and this is how he first conveys his grief as he states how he #walked on at the wind#s will# which suggests a sense of aimlessness from someone who lost their mind. He follows the wind as if they are his direction . When the #wind was still# he sat, showing that he is too absorbed in his thoughts that he doesn#t even realise what he is doing. . The fact that his walking and stopping are guided merely by the wind indicates aimlessness and passivity. The narrator s posture in the second stan!a indicates that he feels e$ceedingly de%pressed. &itting on the grass he is hunched over with his head between his knees. This shows that he is insecure. His depression is so severe that he cannot even groan aloud or speak a word of grief'()y lips*said not +las,-. His head is cast down, as is his much so that his/ hair was over in the grass/. His physical state reflects his psychic paralysis as he remains motionless in this position for an unspecified length of time, but long enough so that he (hear0s1 the day pass/. The poet conveys the feeling of grief by stating how, in the second stan!a, the readers are given an e$treme image of a person in mental pain with #knees between forehead#. #&aid not +las# illustrates how he cannot find words to e$press his feelings. 2urthermore, he shows his vulnerability by describing his ears as #naked# giving a sense that he feels detached from the world. However, we get a perfect understanding of the person#s e$pression when he cannot be specific about his feelings 3n the third stan!a, ()y eyes, wide open, had the run/ let the readers know about the sudden changes in his attitude. However although his eyes are open they don t seem active as if he is vacant. He finally accepts what had happened and knows that he has to move on. 2rom his seated position, he says there are (ten weeds/ that his eyes can (fi$ upon/. This reflect that he sees his problem and becomes aware of it. He realises that the (weeds/ 'his problem- are in his way and the hardiness of the (weeds/ tells that the problem that he faced are hard to be rid of. 4ut of that group, a flowering woodspurge captures his complete

He implies that he himself learned nothing from his grief that day and can no longer remember its cause. However.attention and he is dramatically impressed by the detail that it flowers as (three cups in one/. and so the narrator had a religious e$perience. The narrator attributes his depressed state to (perfect grief/ in the final stan!a. 3 think the (cup of three/ is representative of the holy trinity. . (4ne thing then learnt remains to me/5 He had been visually overwhelmed by the shape of the woodspurge and conse6uently. and the religion helped him in his time of dispair. This could suggest that he feels saved by the woodspurged as to not commit suicide .He then comments that grief may not function to bring wisdom and may not even be remembered. its image and the fact that (The wood spurge has a cup of three/ have been vividly burned into his memory forever.