top of page
  • Ana Savković

William Wordsworth: World of Joy and Pain

Image: Unsplash, downloaded (24.5.2021.)

A Night-Piece

The night sky is overcast

With a continuous cloud of texture close,

Heavy and wan, all whitened by the Moon,

Which trough that veil is indistinctly seen,

A dull contracted circle, yielding light

So feebly spread, that no shadow falls,

Chequering the ground, from rock, plant, tree, or tower

At length a pleasant instantaneous gleam

Startles the pensive traveller while he treads

His lonesome path, with unobserving eye

Bent earthwards; he looks up - the clouds are split

Asunder, - and above his head he sees

The clear Moon, and the glory of heavens.

There, in a black-blue vault she sails along,

Followed by multitudes of stars, that, small

And sharp, and bright, along the dark abyss

Drive as she drives. How fast they wheel away,

Yet vanish not! - the wind is in the tree,

But they are silent; - still they roll along

Immeasurably distant; and the vault,

Built round by those white clouds, enormous clouds,

Still deepens its unfathomable depth.

At length the Vision closes; and the mind,

Not undisturbed by the delight it feels,

Which slowly settles into peaceful calm,

Is left to muse upon the solemn scene.


If this great world of joy and pain

Revolve in one sure track;

If freedom, set, will rise again,

And virtue, flown, come back;

Woe to the purblind crew who fill

The heart with each day's care;

Nor gain, from past or future, skill

To bear, and to forbear!

The World and Our Spirits

The world is too much with us; late and soon,

Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:

Little we see in Nature that is ours;

We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!

This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;

The winds that will be howling at all hours,

And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;

For this, for everything, we are out of tune;

It moves us not. - Great God! I'd rather be

A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;

So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,

Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn

Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;

Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.

Source: Selected poems/William Wordsworth (Wordsworth, W. (1996.) Selected poems/William Wordsworth, London: Penguin Books)


Recent Posts

See All


ZiN Daily is published by ZVONA i NARI, Cultural Production Cooperative

Vrčevan 32, 52204 Ližnjan, Istria, Croatia

OIB 73342230946

ISSN 2459-9379


Copyright © 2017-2021, ZVONA i NARI, Cultural Production Cooperative

The rights to all content presented at belong to its respective authors.

Any further reproduction or dissemination of this content is prohibited without a written consent from its authors. 
All Rights Reserved.

The image of Quasimodo is by French artist Louis Steinheil, which appeared in  the 1844 edition of Victor Hugo's "Notre-Dame de Paris" published by Perrotin of Paris.


are supported by:

bottom of page