Percy Bysshe Shelley



Literatur: Shelley
Literatur: Shelley-Rezeption
Literatur: Ode


                          Ode to the West Wind. *


5                               I.

O, wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn's being,
Thou, from whose unseen presence the leaves dead
Are driven, like ghosts from an enchanter fleeing,

[189] Yellow, and black, and pale, and hectic red,
Pestilence-stricken multitudes: O, thou,
10   Who chariotest to their dark wintry bed

The winged seeds, where they lie cold and low,
Each like a corpse within its grave, until
Thine azure sister of the spring shall blow

Her clarion o'er the dreaming earth, and fill
15   (Driving sweet buds like flocks to feed in air)
With living hues and odours plain and hill:

Wild Spirit, which art moving every where;
Destroyer and preserver; hear, O, hear!


Thou on whose stream, 'mid the steep sky's commotion,
20   Loose clouds like earth's decaying leaves are shed,
Shook from the tangled boughs of Heaven and Ocean,

Angels of rain and lightning: there are spread
On the blue surface of thine airy surge,
Like the bright hair uplifted from the head
[190] Of some fierce Mænad, even from the dim verge
Of the horizon to the zenith's height
The locks of the approaching storm.  Thou dirge

Of the dying year, to which this closing night
Will be the dome of a vast sepulchre,
30   Vaulted with all thy congregated might

Of vapours, from whose solid atmosphere
Black rain, and fire, and hail will burst: O, hear!


Thou who didst waken from his summer dreams
The blue Mediterranean, where he lay,
35   Lulled by the coil of his crystalline streams,

Beside a pumice isle in Baiæ's bay,
And saw in sleep old palaces and towers
Quivering within the wave's intenser day,

All overgrown with azure moss and flowers
40   So sweet, the sense faints picturing them!  Thou
For whose path the Atlantic's level powers

[191] Cleave themselves into chasms, while far below
The sea-blooms and the oozy woods which wear
The sapless foliage of the ocean, know
Thy voice, and suddenly grow grey with fear,
And tremble and despoil themselves: O, hear!


If I were a dead leaf thou mightest bear;
If I were a swift cloud to fly with thee;
A wave to pant beneath thy power, and share
The impulse of thy strength, only less free
Than thou, O, uncontroulable!  If even
I were as in my boyhood, and could be

The comrade of thy wanderings over heaven,
As then, when to outstrip thy skiey speed
55   Scarce seemed a vision; I would ne'er have striven

As thus with thee in prayer in my sore need.
Oh! lift me as a wave, a leaf, a cloud!
I fall upon the thorns of life!  I bleed!

[192] A heavy weight of hours has chained and bowed
60   One too like thee: tameless, and swift, and proud.


Make me thy lyre, even as the forest is:
What if my leaves are falling like its own!
The tumult of thy mighty harmonies

Will take from both a deep, autumnal tone,
65   Sweet though in sadness.  Be thou, spirit fierce,
My spirit!  Be thou me, impetuous one!

Drive my dead thoughts over the universe
Like withered leaves to quicken a new birth!
And, by the incantation of this verse,
Scatter, as from an unextinguished hearth
Ashes and sparks, my words among mankind!
Be through my lips to unawakened earth

The trumpet of a prophecy! O, wind,
If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?



[Fußnote, S. 188]

    * This poem was conceived and chiefly written in a wood that skirts the Arno, near Florence, and on a day when that tempestuous wind, whose temperature is at once mild and animating, was collecting the vapours which pour down the autumnal rains. They began, as I foresaw, at sunset with a violent tempest of hail and rain, attended by that magnificent thunder and lightning peculiar to the Cisalpine regions.

    The phenomenon alluded to at the conclusion of the third stanza is well known to naturalists. The vegetation at the bottom of the sea, of rivers, and of lakes, sympathises with that of the land in the change of seasons, and is consequently influenced by the winds which announce it.   zurück





Erstdruck und Druckvorlage

Percy Bysshe Shelley: Prometheus Unbound.
A Lyrical Drama in Four Acts. With Other Poems.
London: Ollier 1820, S. 188-192.

Die Textwiedergabe erfolgt nach dem ersten Druck (Editionsrichtlinien).



Kommentierte und kritische Ausgaben




Literatur: Shelley

Brandmeyer, Rudolf: Poetologische Lyrik. In: Handbuch Lyrik. Theorie, Analyse, Geschichte. Hrsg. von Dieter Lamping. 2. Aufl. Stuttgart 2016, S. 164-168.

Donahue, Luke: Romantic Survival and Shelley's Ode to the West Wind. In: European Romantic Review 25 (2014), S. 219-242.

Duff, David: Romanticism and the Uses of Genre. Oxford 2009.

Gymnich, Marion / Müller-Zettelmann, Eva: Metalyrik: Gattungsspezifische Besonderheiten, Formenspektrum und zentrale Funktionen. In: Metaisierung in Literatur und anderen Medien. Theoretische Grundlagen – Historische Perspektiven – Metagattungen – Funktionen. Hrsg. von Janine Hauthal u.a. Berlin u.a. 2007 (= spectrum Literaturwissenschaft / spectrum Literature, 12), S. 65-91.

Hopes, David B.: "Ode to the West Wind" and "Mont Blanc". Shelley and the Method of the Sublime. In: The Sublime. Hrsg. von Harold Bloom u.a. New York 2010, S. 235-243.

Mahoney, Charles (Hrsg.): A Companion to Romantic Poetry. Oxford u.a. 2011.

O'Neill, Michael / Howe, Anthony (Hrsg.): The Oxford Handbook of Percy Bysshe Shelley. Oxford 2013.

Powell, Eric T.: Form, History, and the Politics of Lyric in Shelley's "Ode to the West Wind". In: English Literary History 90/3 (2023), S. 723-765.

Quillin, Jessica K.: Shelley and the Musico-Poetics of Romanticism. Farnham 2012.

Weinberg, Alan M. (Hrsg.): The Unfamiliar Shelley. Farnham 2009.



Literatur: Shelley-Rezeption

Barcus, James E. (Hrsg.): Percy Bysshe Shelley. The Critical Heritage. London u.a. 1995.

Boyiopoulos, Kostas / Sandy, Mark (Hrsg.): Decadent Romanticism, 1780-1914. London u. New York 2019.

Conning, Carl-Ludwig: 'A poet, however, whom we fear that few Swedes know about': Hellen Lindgren's 1892 Essay on Percy Bysshe Shelley. In: Nordic Romanticism. Translation, Transmission, Transformation. Hrsg. von Cian Duffy u. Robert W. Rix. Cham 2022, S. 263-292.

Daniela, Cerimonia: Leopardi and Shelley. Discovery, Translation and Reception. Oxford 2015.

Eisner, Eric: Nineteenth-Century Poetry and Literary Celebrity. Basingstoke u.a. 2009.

Miranda, Omar F. / Singer, Kate (Hrsg.): Percy Shelley for Our Times. Cambridge u. New York 2024.

Mole, Tom: What the Victorians Made of Romanticism. Material Artifacts, Cultural Practices, and Reception History. Princeton, NJ 2017.

O'Neill, Michael: Shelleyan Reimaginings and Influence. Oxford 2023.

Schmid, Susanne: Shelley's German Afterlives 1814 – 2000. New York u.a. 2007.

Schmid, Susanne / Rossington, Michael (Hrsg.): The Reception of P. B. Shelley in Europe. London u.a. 2008.

Shih, Terence H. W.: The Romantic Skylark in Taiwanese Literature: Shelleyan Religious Scepticism in Xu Zhimo and Yang Mu. In: British Romanticism in Asia. The Reception, Translation, and Transformation of Romantic Literature in India and East Asia. Hrsg. von Alex Watson u. Laurence Williams. Singapore 2019, S. 319-339.

Wheatley, Kim: Shelley and His Readers. Beyond Paranoid Politics. Columbia u.a. 1999.



Literatur: Ode

Alexandre, Didier u.a. (Hrsg.): L'ode, en cas de toute liberté poétique. Actes du colloque organisé à l'Université de Toulouse-Le Mirail les 14-15-16 janvier 2004. Bern u.a. 2007 (= Littératures de langue française, 3).

Bertoneche, Caroline u.a. (Hrsg.): Keats's Odes, 200 Years On [Special issue]. In: Etudes Anglaises 73.2 (2020), S. 131-248.

Borghardt, Dennis: Kraft und Bewegung. Zur Mechanik, Ästhetik und Poetik in der Antikenrezeption der Frühen Neuzeit. Hamburg 2021.

Braungart, Wolfgang: Hymne, Ode, Elegie oder: von den Schwierigkeiten mit antiken Formen der Lyrik (Mörike, George, George-Kreis). In: "Mehr Dionysos als Apoll". Hrsg. von Achim Aurnhammer u.a. Frankfurt a.M. 2002, S. 245-271.

Burdorf, Dieter: Odendämmerung. Was passierte mit der anspruchsvollsten Form der deutschen Lyrik? In: Dynamik der Form. Literarische Modellierungen zwischen Formgebung und Formverlust. Hrsg. vom Graduiertenkolleg Literarische Form. Heidelberg 2019, S. 31-73.

Burdorf, Dieter: Hölderlins Zackern. Leistung und Überforderung der Odenform (mit Seitenblicken auf Celan und Klopstock). In: Überforderung der Form. Studien zur literarischen Formdynamik. Hrsg. von Jan Urbich u. David E. Wellbery. Göttingen 2024, S. 130-160.

Dauvois, Nathalie (Hrsg.): Renaissance de l'Ode. L'Ode française au tournant des années 1550. Paris 2007 (= Colloques, Congrès et Conférences sur la Renaissance Européenne, 57).

Hamilton, John: The Revival of the Ode In: A Companion to European Romanticism. Hrsg. von Michael Ferber. Malden, MA u.a. 2005, S. 345-359.

Hankeln, Roman: Kompositionsproblem Klassik. Antikeorientierte Versmetren im Liedschaffen J. F. Reichardts und einiger Zeitgenossen. Köln u.a. 2011.

Jung, Sandro: Ode. In: The Oxford Handbook of British Poetry, 1660-1800. Hrsg. von Jack Lynch. Oxford 2016, S. 510-527.

Krummacher, Hans-Henrik: Odentheorie und Geschichte der Lyrik im 18. Jahrhundert. In: Ders., Lyra. Studien zur Theorie und Geschichte der Lyrik vom 16. bis zum 19. Jahrhundert. Berlin u.a. 2013, S. 77-123.



Lyriktheorie » R. Brandmeyer