It is not difficult to see why some poets from Lord Byron to the present have resisted and sometimes even jeered at William Wordsworth (1770-1850). The refreshing heterodoxy of Wordsworth's youthful verse gave way to the piety of his "Ode to Duty." He started out full of French revolutionary fervor—"Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive, / But to be young was very heaven!"—but grew disenchanted and became a Tory. By the time he was 40 he had lost what he called the "visionary gleam." But he lived 40 years more and kept writing.
Not for Wordsworth the ghostly galleons of Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"; Wordsworth's imagination was tamer than that of his collaborator on the landmark "Lyrical Ballads," to whom he was a less than generous friend. Nor was he as adroit a craftsman as Keats or Shelley, masters of lyric forms, although he single-handedly revived the sonnet from a century of neglect. He lacked utterly what Byron had to excess: a sense of humor. There isn't an intentionally funny line in Wordsworth.