We ran out of time the day before to unpack Wordsworth's poetic process from his Preface to Lyrical Ballads. So we begin class by resuming the process of unpacking his process.
The students had made notes as they read Wordsworth's Preface and now I collect their ideas on the whiteboard.
Some of their suggestions include:
We will use these points when we read Tintern Abbey to see how Wordsworth's ideas manifest themselves in his poetry.
As we read the poem we stop occasionally to review Wordsworth's process. At the end of the first stanza we pause to look at the way Wordsworth started the poem. The imagery Wordsworth chooses to start with is rich in time and place. We agree that although the language is dense and poetic, it is still simple and easy to understand. There is a sense in these opening lines that Wordsworth is allowing his imagination to direct his writing; he isn't self-conscious in his writing, nor does he seem to be speaking to a specific audience, but instead writes his lines from those memories that are strongest to him.