Composition and craft If you consult 'craft' in a Wordsworth concordance or a database, the report is not often cheering. There is much to do with contrivance, debased art, suspect artfulness: The 'dangerous craft of picking phrases out / From languages that want the living voice / To make of them a nature to the heart' (Prel.1805 vi 130-2), the 'craft' of 'gilded sympathies' in affected 'dreams and fictions' (vi 481-3), 'the marvellous craft /Of modern Merlins' (vii 686-7), 'the Wizard's craft' ('The Egyptian Maid' 44), modern 'Life' decked out by 'the mean handywork of craftsman' ('London 1802' 4), assassins led by those 'whose craft holds no consent /With aught that breathes the ethereal element' (Dion 54-5), the 'craft of age, seducing reason' (Borderers 363) or 'the craft / Of a shrewd Counsellor' ('Wars of York and Lancaster' 1-2). About as good as it gets is a rare reverence for 'the painter's true Promethean craft' ('Lines suggested' 24) or the poet's hope that his own 'Imagination' has 'learn'd to ply her craft / By judgement steadied' (Prel.1805 xiii 290-4). Making rigorous inquisition intoWordsworth and poetic craft might even seem perversity, for he is, legendarily, the antithesis.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Arts and Humanities(all)