Light romantics, like William Cullen Bryant, believe in the good of nature, spirituality and humanity. In Thanatopsis, the voice of Nature says, “Earth, that nourished thee, shall claim/ Thy growth, to be resolved to earth again.” This quote shows how Earth is welcoming and how the cycle of life is natural and good. Bryant goes on to describe, “The speechless, babe, and the gray-headed man- shall one by one be gathered to thy side.” Bryant shows that all people are equal in the sense that they start and end up in the same place where they both will be reunited. This appealing view of nature and humanity continues on with spirituality when Bryant describes death as lying “down to pleasant dreams.” Bryant makes death sound peaceful and almost a desirable part of nature’s cycle of life. In light romanticism, nature, spirituality and the life of the common man are all displayed positively.
Dark romantics, like Edgar Allen Poe, create a somber and evil tone when describing the different elements of romanticism. In The Raven, Poe creates a negative mood when describing nature, mankind and the spiritual world. For example, The Raven uses words like “bleak, vainly, unhappy, unmerciful Disaster, grim, and loneliness.” These negative words continue describing the spiritual element of romanticism as “demon, devil and evil.”