Kubla Khan by S. T. Coleridge (An Analysis)

Kubla Khan Poem By S.T. Coleridge Analysis Explanation Summary

In the poem, “Kublai Khan” S.T. Coleridge has described his dream of a magnificent palace. The surrounding of this extraordinary place is quite romantic and mysterious. As rivers, forests, hills, flowers, sea, gardens, rocks, chasm, caves, and domes, etc have been presented with tremendous qualities. The poet has tried to depict his conception of the fantastic and supernatural. The elements of fantasy and imagination are clear when he tells about the grandeur of Kubla Khan’s palace. Once again within a dream, the poet dreams of the same palace and describes the reaction of the people. The poem is magical and dream-like written under the influence of opium. It indicates the trance of the atmosphere of the poem. So the effect of the both dreams has been welle explained.

Once, Kubla Khan, the grandson of Genghis Khan, ordered a splendid pleasure house to be built at a place called Xanadu. Consequently, ten miles of fertile ground were surrounded by walls and towers. There were gardens in that land and streams passed through them. The gardens had many trees bearing sweet-smelling flowers. There were very old forests, encircling many green spots. There was a deep loverly chasm out of which a fountain gushed forth. It assumed the form of a river called Alph. So, it flowed up to five miles in a winding course. It passed through deep caves and fell into a lifeless ocean. The shadow of the pleasure house fell on the river water. The noise from the fountain and the caves could be heard there. It was in this noise that Kubla Khan heard the voices of his ancestors’ foretelling him that war was imminent.

Once, the poet saw an Abyssinian maid in a dream. She played on her dulcimer and sang of Mount Abora. He says that if he could recall to his mind her harmony and sound, he would be able to rebuild the pleasure houses of Kubla Khan in his imagination. All the spectators would then cry aloud that he had an uncanny (seeming to have a supernatural character-mysterious) and weird (relating to supernatural) appearance.

Extra: There is also a Netflix TV Series by the name of “Marco Polo” explaining the history of the Mongolian ruling era in the lead of Kubla Khan (also pronounced as Kublai Khan).

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