Percy Bysshe Shelley
Poet’s Revolutionary Zeal
The poem Music When Soft Voices Die has been composed by P. B. Shelley, one of the leading and master mind poets of Romantic English literature (Romantic Period 1790-1830) who opened new vistas and gave a new dimension to imaginative poetry. He is called “Revolutionary Prophet” because of his radical approach towards literature. Like Wordsworth, he gave importance to common objects and common things, which remained, neglected for ages. Coleridge, “An ineffective angel, beating its wings in vain”, remarks him.
Music When Soft Voices Die is an expression of Shelley’s delicate and tender emotions coloured with Romanticism. It is a masterpiece, which narrates the durability of the impacts of music. Shelley speaks of the permanence of the natural and spiritual beauty, which is an everlasting source of joy. The poet says that when the sweet voices of music end, its impression is felt later. When the rose flower is fade away, its sweet smell can be perceived when it is no more. In the same way, one’s companion remains in one’s heart when it goes away from its lover’s life. One cannot forget his sweet heart when she has deserted his life. The contemplation or remembrance of one’s beloved transports him to the world of fantasy and fairyland. People leave the place and depart from this mortal world, but they remain in the heart of those who love them. No doubt, beauty is very short lived. The physical aspect of beauty is bound to be faded, but the transcendental, spiritual and metaphysical aspect of beauty is immortal.
Forever Presence of Imaginative Objects
The poet has beautifully related music, fragrance of flower and the thought of the beloved. The poet says that man wants to refresh his mind by the presence of beautiful flowers, charming voice of music and the thought of beloved, delights the senses and give pleasure to the soul ever after the departure of all these things. Here the poet compares his beloved’s sweetness to that of a rose and shows that it is everlasting. His philosophy reflects the truth of Wordsworth’s theory of imaginative experience, “Emotions recollected in tranquility.”