By B. Keegan
This examine exhibits how poets labored inside of and opposed to the to be had varieties of nature writing to problem their position inside actual, political, and cultural landscapes. the remedy of alternative ecosystems, it argues that writing in regards to the atmosphere allowed labouring-class poets to discover vital social and aesthetic questions.
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Extra resources for British Labouring-Class Nature Poetry, 1730-1837
Bloomfield’s syntax and overall structure are what best reveal his efforts to find a language fit for his environmental vision. Lawson has already noted that the majority of the poem is written in the present tense. The poem exists not in a lost pastoral past, nor in the deferred future of the more prescriptive georgic mode. The Farmer’s Boy is both pastoral and georgic; it celebrates alternately leisure and labour. This, coupled with the seasonal structure, allows Bloomfield to evoke permanence and change.
It can be argued, however, that such idealism may be disabling to real efforts to save the planet. Pastoralism looks to the past, not the present or the future. A sense of past, present and future, of a cyclical – and not a myopically nostalgic – temporality is essential to understanding the role of the dead animals in the poem. The lambs slaughtered in ‘Spring’ reappear at the close of the poem as a whole, in ‘Winter’, in a scene describing humans’ active intervention into the animal world (by disguising the orphaned sheep in the skins of the lambs who have not survived, so as to trick the ewes into adopting them).
43 Holland dutifully notes he submitted his manuscript to Bloomfield himself and includes in the prefatory material an excerpt of Bloomfield’s response, which provides insight into the latter’s writing process. Bloomfield writes to Holland: You are not the first to have noticed the Omission of the Haymaking: the best excuse I have to offer is, that in composing the Poem I was determined that what I said on Farming should be EXPERIMENTALLY true. There was on that small Farm no Hay to make; it formed no part of my business; and Thompson has described it most charmingly.