POETRY ON POETRY: The Metafictional Elements in the Works of William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth is one of the most extensively researched authors in English literature. Despite this, there seem to be no studies looking into the self-reflective elements of his poetry. This essay makes use of the ideas of the “Preface to Lyrical Ballads” in order to identify self-reflective elements in three selected poems: “Tintern Abbey,” “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud” and “Elegiac Stanzas.” The poems are then analysed within the framework of narrative narcissism in order to ascertain to what degree they can be classified as metafictional. Hutcheon’s framework and theory are used in order to establish whether Wordsworth’s poems reflect the very process by which they were composed. This essay shows that some of the best lyrics by the great Romantic poet incorporate diegetic narcissistic forms.