The Splendor Falls on Castle Falls-Alfred, Lord Tennyson

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"The Splendor Fell on Castle Falls"

“The Splendor Fell on Castle Falls” is a song-like poem that paints an image of the poet alone in an isolated valley, watching the sunshine rapidly fade through the leaves on the ancient mountains as a loud crashing sound drives from the waterfalls. The enticing and delicious sound of the bulge raffling from the gaps and spaces of the cliffs emerges at a high pitch and gradually dies out. The bulge music is so mystical, and it shows how the speaker loves the beautiful essence of the scene, imagining the echoes to be from elves. The beautiful illusionary echoes and magical elements of the bulge sound make the poem supreme and influence and impact on reader`s understanding of the poem.

Tennyson employs the echoes throughout the poem to draw his emphasis on the imagination of the existence of the elves. The echo sounds symbolize the effect of our lives after death, which Tennyson in his poem tries to connect himself with the elves in the imaginary world through the charming music. “They faint on hill or field or field; our echoes roll from soul to soul, And grow forever and forever” (Tennyson 3). The song of the bugle is magical in essence that it shifts the mind of the poet beyond the material world. He is completely swallowed in the imagination whereby urges the bulge to blow when the echoes seem to fade, he believes that the elves can hear him. “Blow let us hear the purple glens replying” (Tennyson 2). Tennyson also uses echoes in the poem itself, the repetition of the last line in every stanza of the poem and the word dying signify the echoes. “Blow, bugles; answer, echoes, dying, dying, dying” (Tennyson 1). In summary, the use echoes in the enable Tennyson to present his message in a way that any reader could understand its essence.

Break, Break, Break-Alfred, Lord Tennyson

“Break, Break, Break” is poem written by Alfred, Lord Tennyson in his early twenties about the death of his friend Arthur Hallam. He tries to express his grief in a special but implicitly way, the poem shows him standing on a cliff emotionally commanding the sea to “break.” People are busy engaging in various activities in the sea the author remains at the same point; no one pays attention to him. Grief holds his thoughts, movement and speech still. The mood of the poem is revealed by certain rhythm as it has been used by the author.

The poet uses a quatrain kind of rhythm where each stanza has four lines. The poem has four stanzas each with four lines, the second and fourth lines in every stanza rhyme. “sea” and “me” in the first stanza, “play” and “bay” in the second stanza, hill and “still” in the third stanza and “sea” and “me” in the last stanza (Tennyson 1,2,3,4). The rhyme between “sea” and “me” explains the relationship in behaviors of the two, the author and the sea. Tennyson life has changed from the loss of his friend; life will never be the same again but the sea will move as usual. There is repetition of the first lines in stanzas one and four “Break, Break, Break” and the “sea” and “me” rhyme me in the first and last stanzas. The repetition signifies the essence of paralysis, reveals that the speaker is not moving but remains at the same point since the beginning of the poem to the end. Despite other activities going as mentioned in the poem, Tennyson cannot move because grief holds his thoughts, movement and speech still. Therefore, the speaker uses the rhythm of the lines to signify the mood of the poem.

Works Cited

Tennyson, Alfred Lord. “‘Break, Break, Break.’” Poetry Foundation. N.p., 2017. Web.

---. “The Splendor Falls.” Poets.Org. N.p., 2017. Web.

November 03, 2022

Music Literature


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Song Poetry Literature Review

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