Study Guide

Wind Power

By Ted Hughes

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The wind in "Wind" can be so violent precisely because it has so much power. It's like not Willem Dafoe as the Green Goblin in the Spider-Manmovies, plotting and seizing power. It just is. It's the wind, after all. The wind isn't really something that has power. It is power, or a form of power. It's one of the forces that Nature uses to maintain itself. There's obviously nothing malicious about the wind, nothing power-hungry about the wind—yet it retains the ability to fling a bird to its death or smash in a window. This makes the wind's power unpredictable, wild, untamed. The power controlled by nature is not like the power controlled by humans. It's simultaneously less comprehensible, while being less blameworthy at the same time.

Questions About Power

  1. What is the difference between Nature's power and humans' power? Does this poem note a difference? If so, where?
  2. Will Nature always ultimately dominate human beings? How might our speaker answer that question?
  3. What, if anything, in this poem shows us that the wind's power is something that can also benefit humans, instead of merely threatening them?

Chew on This

This poem shows us that human beings will never overthrow Nature's power over them, entirely.

The very fact that this poem is written by a human being for human beings is proof that we have unlimited power over the natural world—thanks to our imaginations.

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