“The Night Wind” by Emily Bronte
Rhyme and Meter:
The poem has a pleasant sound to it and flows nicely with the rhyme created in every second line. The rhyming words, through/ dew, hair/ fair, me/ be, etc. create connectedness within verses (1-12). The use of concise and specific language is quite pleasing for the readers.
Tone and Tone Shifts:
The tone of the poem alters as the poem progresses. Initially, Bronte presents a calm and tranquil tone with words such as mellow, soft, and silent; exuding a feeling of positivity (1-8). The tone shifts and the reader can sense an impending danger as the poetess tries to resist the wind’s persistent allure, labeling the thoughts as needless (9-10) and tries to fight the imagination overpowering her mind (13-16). The lure of the night and the dark woods convey a deeper meaning, shedding light on the speaker’s inner turmoil and desire for peace that she seeks in death (33-36).
Bronte paints a picture in the minds of the readers from the beginning of the poem appealing to the senses by personifying the wind. The reader is immediately taken to summer nights, seeing the cloudless sky and feeling the soft wind (1-6). The descriptive vocabulary used for the wind such as breathing, murmur, and music creates a symphony in the readers’ minds and one can almost hear these sounds (9-19).
The central theme of this poem revolves around solitude and an inner battle of thoughts. The underlying theme of death and sadness are depicted through a dark night which conceals the speaker’s desire for companionship; to have someone to talk to. Her conversation with the wind portrays her loneliness and a temptation to sink into darkness which she fights against concluding that after her death, the wind can blow her wherever it wants. The poem highlights the power of imagination and how in solitude it is our sole companion.
Bronte, Emily. “The Night-Wind.” Poems of Emily Brontë. 1846. Lit2Go Edition. <https://etc.usf.edu/lit2go/75/poems-of-emily-bronte/5160/the-night-wind/>.