In ‘The Tables Turned,’ Wordsworth invites us to break free from the constraints of modern society and rediscover the natural world’s beauty and wisdom.
Wordsworth critiques what many scholars live for in terms of analyzing knowledge in books. He is disappointed in the over-analyzed terminology and the complicated concepts that distract from the more considerable informational achievements one might be able to accomplish if not so stuck in the details. He mentions that books are too narrow and often do not show the truth about humanity, but that nature shows the reality of the human spirit. The reader feels Wordsworth's disappointment that they are reading the poem instead of watching a bird on a tree branch.
‘The Dancing’ by Gerald Stern is an emotionally complex poem that wrestles with feelings of joy and bittersweetness inspired by a fond memory.
The speaker has a clear disappointment in regards to their present circumstances. Down to the very shops they wander in and an inability to find the radio from their memory or to even just hear the music that emanated from it. To the speaker the past is currently preferable to their present.
‘The Machinist, Teaching His Daughter to Play the Piano’ by B.H. Fairchild is a free verse poem about how the creative process can connect a father and daughter.
The machinist, in this poem, must reconcile with the fact that he has given up on his dreams but must work hard to provide his daughter with more freedom and opportunity. Throughout most of the poem, the father is silent and rough, reflecting on the past when he still felt that he could have used his hands for more than working metal.
‘The Nightingale’ is a unique love-lyric that exploits the classical myth of Philomel to morph the personal rue of a lovelorn heart into a superb piece of poetry.
It can be said that the three characters of the poem, Philomela, Procne and Tereus got new life and among them Philomela's transformation was of the worth. Disappointment emerges in the poem as Philomela is with her sister's husband and Procne with her husband.
‘Circe’ by Hilda Doolittle is a poem that gives voice to Circe, a goddess and master of magical enchantments. Despite her power, she laments that she cannot control love.
In this poem, Circe is disappointed that Odysseus has left her. While she talks a lot about how powerful and influential she is, this self-aggrandizement only points out that she could not control her love, nor could she keep her lover from leaving her. With no way to change things, she must sit and pine for him, her power useless over him.
‘Claudette Colvin Goes to Work’ by Rita Dove depicts the life and struggles of Claudette Colvin, who is best known as a civil rights activist.
There is a clear feeling of disappointment in this poem as Colvin alludes to her youthful dreams and contrasts them with the reality of her day-to-day life. She works hard, spends nights in the hospital, and still struggles to make ends meet.
‘Monologue’ by Hone Tuwhare is a contemporary poem about the difficulties workers face when looking for a job and how temporary those jobs can be.
Disappointment with one's life and job prospects is an important part of this poem. The speaker knows what its like to be turned down for a much-needed job and also knows what it's like to be fired from a job that seemed too good to be true.
‘Anorexic’ by Eavan Boland conveys the mindset of a woman determined to destroy her physical body through starvation and filled with hatred for her sinful past, as according to the Biblical story of Adam and Eve.
‘Divorce’ by Jackie Kay is about parent-child relationships and how children are impacted by adults’ issues. The speaker is a teenager who is struggling to contend with her parent’s relationship with one another.