After a pleasant boat ride takes a turn for the worse, William Wordsworth contemplates and explains how a traumatic experience has scarred his memory.
In the beginning, Wordsworth unties “a little boat” from a willow tree to take a pleasant boat ride. Wordsworth illustrates the calmness and tranquility of the surroundings. By describing
“small circles glittering idly in the moon”, readers see the imagery of the harmonious scene
Wordsworth experiences. Wordsworth himself acts peacefully as he tells readers “I dipped my oars into the silent lake”. Clearly the tone Wordsworth conveys to the reader contains a sense of serenity in the first part of the poem.
However, the serenity does not last as Wordsworth negatively changes the tone. Once
Wordsworth sees “a huge peak, black and huge” the pleasant boat ride ends. Rather than dipping his oars into the water, Wordsworth says he “struck and struck again.” Wordsworth depicts his changed responds through a change in diction that gives readers a sense of urgency in his actions. This darker tone and diction carries on throughout the rest of the poem.
Wordsworth ends the poem with a description of the lasting effect the event had. After specifying an elapse of time, Wordsworth explains “there hung a darkness” in his thoughts.
Clearly the “spectacle” leaves a stain on Wordsworth psyche. Now he cannot even imagine
“pleasant images of trees.” The lasting negative effect tells readers his experience on the boat
was traumatizing. Like a deep wound that has not healed, day and night Woodsworth’s traumatic experience troubles his mind.
Like Woodsworth’s distortion of life after a dismaying event, Hamlet also lives a pleasant