The Wreck of the Deutschland: Stanza 11 - Summary

Also Read


      The poet here depicts on the theme of death. The all devouring death is all powerful and through its various instruments like swords, steel rods, iron bars, flames of fire, poison of a snake or the menacing floods and cruel storms, it can pronounce its effect. The storms on land or sea proclaim the coming of death. But human beings remain oblivious to this fact and are mistaken thinking that death will not touch them. People became headless and are lost in celebrations of life and its enjoyment. But the poet reminds us that time which is personified as reaper will one day cut us down with its scythe and will lay its icy touch of death on us. The meadow of our life will be buried by the plowshare.

Line by Line Analysis

Lines 14: Some find.....bugle his fame: God has number of instruments at His disposal to cause death. Death can kill with swords, steel rods and iron bars. Flames of fires, poison of snake or the teeth of fierce beasts and floods can also kill. The beats of the drum pronounce the arrival of death. Similarly, the powerful storms that blow on land or sea proclaim the power and arrival of death.

Lines 5-6: But we dream we are rooted in earth-Dust! / Flesh falls within sight of us, we, though our flower the same: But people have wrong notions and think that that they are not dust but rooted deeply in the earth. Everyday we come across scenes of people dying but we think ourselves to be immortal.

Lines 7-8: Wave with the.....share come: ‘wave with the meadow’ means enjoying the life to the brim and remain oblivious to the fact that clutches of death won’t leave us. ‘Scythe’ refers to a reaper holding a scythe. Hopkins personifies time and death as a reaper with a scythe. Human beings remain forgettable of the fact that the time is the ultimate reaper and is all devouring or it can cut us all down and put an end to our life. The meadow of human life or the enjoyments will simply end by the reaper.

Previous Post Next Post