Both readings are determinedly abstracted from the child of the text: a “child” not a “girl”, an “it” not a “she”. Such an impersonal introduction suggests the speaker is attempting to appear an impartial, rational
Yet it is clear from the outset that the voice is prejudiced.
– innocence and ignorance –
clad’. This is no doubt partly an exemplification of Wordsworth’s philosophy – that children possess an intrinsic affinity for the natural world; yet it also signifies a fuller – and inherently Romantic – conception of death to which the poem’s narrator appears oblivious. The girl relates the passing of her brother through the medium of natural phenomena, t
her stubborn refusal to accept both the interlocuter’s logic and the poet’s metre (each affirmative “seven” throughout the poem disturbs the rhythm of the line).