Coleridge and Wordsworth's Poetry

Chapter 18

Occasion in the Lyrical Ballads, and the items originally proposed--Preface to the second edition--The resulting controversy, their causes and acrimony--Philosophic meanings of a Composition and Beautifully constructed wording with scholia.

During the first year that Mr. Wordsworth and I were neighbours, the conversations turned frequently for the two capital points of poems, the power of thrilling the compassion of the reader by a faithful adherence towards the truth of nature, plus the power of offering the interest of novelty by the modifying colours of creativeness. The abrupt charm, which will accidents of light and tone, which moon-light or sun diffused more than a known and familiar panorama, appeared to signify the practicability of combining equally. These are the poetry of nature. The thought suggested itself--(to which individuals I do not really recollect)-- which a series of poems might be consisting of two kinds. In the one particular, the occurrences and agents were to be, in part at least, supernatural; and the excellence directed at was to are made up in the interesting of the estime by the dramatic truth of such emotions, as could naturally come with such situations, supposing them real. And real through this sense they have been to every person who, from whatever way to obtain delusion, offers at any time believed himself below supernatural firm. For the other class, subject matter were to be chosen from common life; the characters and incidents may be such as will probably be found in every single village and its particular vicinity, where there is a meditative and sense mind to find after them, or to detect them, whenever they present themselves. In this idea started the plan with the LYRICAL BALLADS; in which it had been agreed, that my endeavours should be directed to persons and characters great, or at least intimate; yet to be able to transfer from your inward nature a human fascination and a semblance of truth enough to procure for these shadows of imagination that willing postponement, interruption of shock for as soon as, which makes up poetic faith. Mr. Wordsworth, on the other hand, was to propose to himself since his object, to give the elegance of uniqueness to issues of every working day, and to motivate a feeling similar to the great, by arising the mind's attention to the lethargy of custom, and directing it to the sophistication and the magic of the world before us; an inexhaustible treasure, but for which, in consequence from the film of familiarity and selfish solicitude, we have sight, yet find not, hearing that hear not, and hearts that neither feel nor figure out. With this kind of view I actually wrote THE ANCIENT MATROS, and was preparing amongst other poetry, THE DARKER LADIE, plus the CHRISTABEL, in which I should have more nearly understood my ideal, than I had developed done in my first make an effort. But Mr. Wordsworth's market had turned out so much more good, and the range of his poems so much increased, that my personal compositions, instead of forming an equilibrium, appeared alternatively an interpolation of heterogeneous matter. Mister. Wordsworth added two or three poems written in his own persona, in the impassioned, lofty, and sustained diction, which is feature of his genius. From this form the MUSICAL BALLADS had been published; and were shown by him, as a great experiment, if subjects, which will from their character rejected the usual ornaments and extra-colloquial type of poems in general, might not be thus managed in the language of ordinary life as to create the enjoyable interest, which it is the odd business of poetry to impart. Towards the second release he added a preface of significant length; in which, notwithstanding a lot of passages of apparently a contrary transfer, he was recognized to contend for the extension of this design to poems of all kinds, and reject because vicious and indefensible all phrases and forms of presentation that were not supplied in what this individual (unfortunately, I do believe, adopting a great equivocal expression) called the language of real world. From this preface, prefixed to poems in which it was difficult to reject the presence of...

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