The Solitary Reaper

Isn’t this poem by William Wordsworth your most favorite of all poems? Isn’t this one of the finest pieces of poetry about nature that we read as kids in school and still remember it every time when we think about English Poetry? Just felt like sharing this beautiful work with you. Hope to know about your feelings while reading it today once again!

The Solitary Reaper

Behold her, single in the field,
Yon solitary Highland Lass!
Reaping and singing by herself;
Stop here, or gently pass!
Alone she cuts and binds the grain,
And sings a melancholy strain;
O listen! for the Vale profound
Is overflowing with the sound.

No Nightingale did ever chant
More welcome notes to weary bands
Of travellers in some shady haunt,
Among Arabian sands:
A voice so thrilling ne’er was heard
In spring-time from the Cuckoo-bird,
Breaking the silence of the seas
Among the farthest Hebrides.

Will no one tell me what she sings?–
Perhaps the plaintive numbers flow
For old, unhappy, far-off things,
And battles long ago:
Or is it some more humble lay,
Familiar matter of to-day?
Some natural sorrow, loss, or pain,
That has been, and may be again?

Whate’er the theme, the Maiden sang
As if her song could have no ending;
I saw her singing at her work,
And o’er the sickle bending;–
I listened, motionless and still;
And, as I mounted up the hill,
The music in my heart I bore,
Long after it was heard no more.


47 thoughts on “The Solitary Reaper”

  1. Great poem.

    And these concluding lines will remain in my mind to be quoted again and again.

    I listened, motionless and still;
    And, as I mounted up the hill,
    The music in my heart I bore,
    Long after it was heard no more.

    I re-read motionless and still
    And felt inside a special thrill
    These lines in my mind I bore
    Long after I read no more.


  2. This brought back the memories of the class room, may be 10th class. I did not know English then, but I was bewitched by this . I am going to read it well and understand and enjoy it fully now.


  3. I can’t thank you enough for sharing this .. This is my favourite poem ..I love it for its vivid imagery .. I still remember the first time I read this poem and I even had a melancholic song in my mind . Great share 🙂

  4. रास्ते में खेत के किनारे रुकी ट्रेन से यह दृष्य़ बहुधा देखा है, पर इतने महीन भाव नहीं उभरे।


  5. i love all wordsworth poems, solitary reaper is very beautiful, so is lucy gray, we are seven, daffodils and a few more (have forgotten the titles)..

    the picture first caught my eyes, its fabulous, then i noted you were talking about one of my favourite poems and my favourite english poet. had to thank you 🙂

  6. Yes, this does take me back to high school. Makes me want to get back into reading poetry again as long as I don’t have to pick it a part and do a poetic analysis. Always hated those. “Why can’t they just let us enjoy the poem?” I used to wonder as a young student. Thanks for sharing!

  7. This poem was taught by a very favourite English teacher of mine…and I still remember how I loved the expressions used in this poem. I loved the way the poet picked out a random but kinda usual scene (a woman reaping) and weaved his thoughts, imagination and expressions into it to create this beautiful poem!

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  9. Ah memories! But I had forgotten this one really until I saw this here complete with the illustration that I remember my Literature book had too (or something similar). This one piece is responsible for teaching me the meanings of words like ‘solitary’ and ‘melancholy’. And Wordsworth, he is ever the genius. Thanks for the memories 🙂

  10. this is a reminder!

    When I was a kid, I used to run away from English class, especially Poetry. Somehow, i was not pull towards it then. Soon after I picked up things for reading on my own, I was lost only to find myself! This poem of Wordsworth is one of those, that had touched me and i still can remember my first sense of it! 🙂

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