Percy Bysshe Shelley
Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822) is a Romantic poet. His works include Queen Mab, Prometheus Unbound, The Mask of Anarchy and numerous other brilliant lyrical pieces among others. He was an atheist who refused to concretize his experience and intuition into a philosophy. Wordsworth recognized the artist in him when he praised his style.
This one-sentence poem describes the joyless moon that does not find anything constant in this world. It is itself inconstant. That is why it seems to be in quest of constancy.
Art thou pale for weariness
Of climbing heaven, and gazing on the earth,
Among the stars that have a different birth,-
And ever-changing, like a joyless eye
That finds no object worth its constancy?
art thou: are you
DO YOU KNOW?
A simile is a weak comparison that uses the words “like” or “as” to express a similarity between two things. In the poem, the moon is like a joyless eye.”
1. What is the poem about?
2. Why do the stars have a different birth?
3. Who is seeking constancy? Is the moon constant? Is anything else constant?
4. Write five similes comparing the moon to something else each time.
5. Is “like a joyless eye” an apt simile? Explain.