The Tide Rises the Tide Falls

3050 Words13 Pages
The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow The tide rises, the tide falls, (a) The twilight darkens, the curlew calls; (a) Along the sea-sands damp and brown (b) The traveller hastens toward the town, (b) And the tide rises, the tide falls. (c) Darkness settles on roofs and walls, (a) But the sea, the sea in the darkness calls; (a) The little waves, with their soft, white hands, (b) Efface the footprints in the sands, (b) And the tide rises, the tide falls. (c) The morning breaks; the steeds in their stalls (a) Stamp and neigh, as the hostler* calls; (a) The day returns, but nevermore (b) Returns the traveller to the shore, (b) And the tide rises, the tide falls. (c) *This is a classic example of Romanticism. The idea that nature is beautiful and all-powerful, while we are weak and insignificant in comparison. It's about how the ocean never ceases to move--the tide rises and falls and the waves crash on the shore every day for eternity. But people come and go. We don't live forever. One day, the traveler doesn't return to the shore, meaning, one day we die and can't go there anymore. But life goes on About the poet: Longfellow was one of the five Fireside Poets, so-called because they were extremely popular, and many of their poems were written for the purpose of recitation (by fireside or elsewhere). He was so popular that popular 20th-century wisdom held that he must not have been particularly gifted. On the one hand, looking at his poems and his use of conventional forms, with little in the way of daring and experimentation to move the forms forward or break new ground, one can see why his skill was considered less than some others of his era who broke new poetic ground. form and composition. This is an example of a rondeau, with a minor variation. A rondeau is a form taken from the French (hence the

More about The Tide Rises the Tide Falls

Open Document