In asks,”Be thou, Spirit fierce, / My spirit,”

In “Ode to the West Wind,” Shelley uses personification to describe the *West Wind*. However, what Shelley personifies changes throughout the poem. 1.

At the start of the poem, Shelley personifies the west end as a Divine figure, who embodies both anger and mercy, life and death. The wind is like an invisible force that controls and causes everything. 2. Shelley calls the wind”**Destroyer and Preserver**,” an epithet that has spiritual resonance. The wind also seems to be personified as Death, about the spiritual motif, since it turns the leaves into”ghosts” which are”pestilence-stricken.” Diction like”decaying” and”sepulcher” also allude to the end as the spirit of death. However, even in the face of the decay the west wind brings, the poet asks the wind to”lift” himreturning to the positive aspects of the end as a Godlike figure.

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3. In the last stanza, Shelley describes the west end as having a”lyre,” indicating that he is currently personifying the wind for a poet. A favorite trope in Romantic poetry is the aeolian harp, which the wind”plays” and which becomes a symbol for the poet himself. Furthering this notion from the poem, Shelley asks,”Be thou, Spirit fierce, / My spirit,” suggesting that he feels a connection to the wind as they are both poets.


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