Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey, on Revisiting the Banks of the Wye during a Tour, July 13, 1798
Memory and the Past Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
Five years have past; five summers, with the length
Of five long winters! (1-2)
The opening lines of the poem practically scream at you the importance of the past. The speaker repeats three times just how many years have gone by since he was last at the Wye: five. Five years.
The day is come when I again repose
Here, under this dark sycamore, and view
These plots of cottage-ground, these orchard tufts, (9-11)
Finally, after "five long winters," the speaker is able to repeat some of his earlier experiences. Or, at least, he's able to go over the same ground again. The experiences, as it turns out, are harder to duplicate.
These beauteous forms,
Through a long absence, have not been to me
As is a landscape to a blind man's eye (22-24)
The "beauteous forms" describe the lovely view. Even during his "long absence" from the Wye river valley, the speaker says that the "forms" themselves have been present to him. They haven't just been like an empty description, like a "landscape to a blind man's eye."