“The eagle” by Alfred Tennyson


He clasps the crag with crooked hands;
Close to the sun in lonely lands,
Ring’d with the azure world, he stands.
The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls;
He watches from his mountain walls,
And like a thunderbolt he falls.

Alfred Tennyson
1851

The short poem has visual beauty and harmony of words, apart from the effective use of alliteration ‘c,-‘c’-‘c’ .Crisp mono-syllabic words convey the swift efficiency of the eagle. The eagle‘s talons are crooked hands and the eagle’s perch is close to the sun, ringed with the azure world. Below is the sea with its wrinkled waves and it will appear from the top of the crag as if the sea is crawling .The eagle watches from the mountain’s “walls” and as soon as it spots a prey it swoops on it with the speed of a thunder-bolt.

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