The main idea in verses 4 to 7 of “Intimations of Immortality” is that the communication between kids and nature that was brought to light verse 1 with “ye birds” is growing tighter and more intense.
Verse 4 talks about the unity of a group composed of human kids and lambs, who represent nature. For example, “we”, “join” and “throng” refer to this strongly united group who seems to be together in real life. Communication grows into communion. However, this verse also contains the words “in thought” that change the meaning of the sentence. Indeed, this group is not united in a physical way, but in a psychological way, that means the members think about the rest of the group without being with it. It’s only a virtual communication in the head of the kids, the objective of which is to reassure, comfort and confide in them as if they were all together with no separation. The mind has the power to bridge all distances.
Nature is also showed as a human being with a “heart” able to communicate with humans, feel, have energy and so live : in a way, there is some humanity in nature. This can be the justification of this intense communication between the two biological groups and makes emotion very strong. Indeed, the “heart” is showed as a sixth sense that can transcend, surpass or even replace the five others which thereby become unnecessary as it allows one to feel everything. This is a totally romantic interpretation, in the sense that the romantic poet generally views nature as his purely spiritual equal.
Finally, this passage has an interesting musicality and rhythm that make it sounds like a song; for example, we can notice an alternation of the stressed and unstressed syllables (“WE in THOUGHT will JOIN your THRONG”). It creates a perfect harmony showing the poet’s impressive and balanced relation with nature. The happiness of life is showed by repetitions, short words and stresses at the end of the verses which all create an upbeat rhythm and allow the reader to imagine a scene in which lambs are jumping and people dancing. These writing methods make us think about energy and movement, which together mean life.
Posted by Nael