Citation: William Wordsworth. Ed. Alan Liu. Illustrator, James Muir. Poetry for Young People. New York: Sterling Publishing, 2003.

Jacket blurb: “William Wordsworth’s finest poems take you on a captivating adventure to another time and place. Fantastic color paintings portray the mountains and lakes, and the people who lived by them, that Wordsworth writes about in his lyrical verses.”

[48 pp., 35 illustrations;
ISBN-10: 0806982772,
ISBN-13: 978-0806982779]

William Wordsworth edition for children William Wordsworth edition for children (back)

Excerpt (beginning of Introduction, p. 4)

He loved to walk alone among the mountains, lakes, and wilds of the Lake District in England, his home.. Sometimes it was as if there was no one else in the world, and he would look at the way the light fell on a tree or the wind came through the grasses as if they had something secret to tell him. Many times, he would write his poetry outside while walking–write it aloud without pen or paper.

However famous William became, though, there was still something lonely about him. He and his friends had a habit of naming places in nature for each other — special rocks, woods, and so on. There was one mountain in the Lake District that seemed the “loneliest place we have among the clouds.” Dorothy named the mountain after him.

But nature was only complete for him when shared with a few, special people. Once, at a time when he was writing some of his best poetry, he and his friends carved their initials on a large rock. “W.W.” it said at the top, and then beneath: “M.H., D.W., S.T.C., J.W., S.H.”

His name was William Wordsworth, and the other initials carved on the rock were those of his beloved younger sister Dorothy and younger brother John, his future wife Mary Hutchinson and her sister Sara, and his best friend and fellow poet, Samuel Taylor Coleridge. William, Coleridge, and Dorothy (who described their life in her famous journals) were at the heart of a new movement in poetry called Romanticism–a movement of strong “feeling” and “imagination” inspired by nature, the lives of common people, and often the poets’ own lives. Even John, who captained a ship at sea, was what William called a “silent poet” who shared their interests.