“I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud” (also commonly known as “Daffodils) is a lyric poem by William Wordsworth.
It was inspired by an event on April 15, 1802, in which Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy came across a “long belt” of daffodils. Written some time between 1804 and 1807 (in 1804 by Wordsworth’s own account), it was first published in 1807 in Poems in Two Volumes, and a revised version was published in 1815. It is written in six-line stanzas with an ababcc rhyme scheme, like the Venus and Adonis stanza of Shakespeare, except in tetrameters rather than pentameters.
I WANDERED LONELY AS A CLOUD
I wandered lonely as a Cloud
That floats on high o’er Vales and Hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd
A host of dancing Daffodils;
Along the Lake, beneath the trees,
Ten thousand dancing in the breeze.
The waves beside them danced, but they
Outdid the sparkling waves in glee: –
A poet could not but be gay
In such a laughing company:
I gaz’d – and gaz’d – but little thought
What wealth the shew to me had brought:
For oft when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude,
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the Daffodils.