Perception Versus Truth in Roethke’s “In a Dark Time”

In Theodore Roethke’s poem, “In a Dark Time,” the speaker crosses over into the undiscovered world of insanity and communicates perceptions that others have disproved. Likely representative of Roethke’s own personal struggles with schizophrenia, “In a Dark Time” displays the thought process of a disturbed individual. Through Roethke’s use of deceptive rhyme, constant paradox, and … Read more

Empowering Medieval Women: Aspects of Courtly Love in The Lais of Marie de France

During the Medieval time, a woman would generally be forced to depend upon a man for her livelihood. However, in the fictional world of courtly love – a 12th-century philosophical phenomenon, which is believed by some to have been originated as a form of goddess worship, a man is unable to survive without his beloved. … Read more

Two Interpretations of “A Slumber did my spirit seal”

William Wordsworth’s poem “A slumber did my spirit seal” compels different interpretations with different readers. In this case, two critics, Cleanth Brooks and F.W. Bateson, analyze the poem and produce two contrasting interpretations. For the most part both critics focus on examining the same facts in the poem, especially, the final two lines of the … Read more

“After I no longer speak”; A Message on the Impact of the Holocaust in “Shooting Stars”

Humans inflict suffering on other humans and when events are forgotten, they are repeated. In the poem “Shooting Stars,” Carol Ann Duffy tells a shocking story of a female prisoner held by Nazis in a concentration camp around the time of the Holocaust. This is a poem in which human suffering is being actively portrayed. … Read more

Harrison’s “National Trust” and the Corruption of the Upper Classes

Published in The School of Eloquence in 1978, Tony Harrison’s “National Trust” is the embodiment of his frustrations at the British social-class system. Through this poem, he divulges how, after receiving a post-War opportunity for education, he was dislocated from his family. “National Trust” exposes his opinions regarding this vexed transformation, including his subjective comments … Read more

Subverting Romance and Sexuality in “Goblin Market” and “No, Thank You, John”

In Literary Theory: The Basics, H. Bertens asserts that even in the works of culturally and sexually liberal male writers such as D.H Lawrence and Henry Miller, male characters are “denigrating, exploitative, and repressive in their relations with women.” In the poems Goblin Market and No, Thank You, John, Christina Rossetti subverts the idea that … Read more

Samuel Coleridge’s Lime-Tree Bower Through the Lens of Wordsworth’s “Nuns Fret Not at Their Convent’s Narrow Room”

In Samuel Coleridge’s “This Lime-Tree Bower My Prison,” the speaker views the lime-tree bower he sits under as a prison, despite its beautiful description. He wishes to venture out with his friends and see the beautiful nature they will see, and as a result of desperately wanting to be somewhere else, he misses the beauty … Read more

Close Reading: Sonnet 32 by Charlotte Smith

The new sensibility that characterizes Romantic literature often leads to the recurrence of melancholy as a powerful and recurrent motif, especially in poetry. Romantic poets recur to their poems to express personal feelings and anxieties and in order to capture this, poets use the imagination. As Addison and Shaftesbury put it, `the imagination must not … Read more

Evolution of Attitude in Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”

Evolution of Attitude in Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” T. S. Eliot’s notoriously opaque “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” can be interpreted only by acknowledging that the speaker’s thought process is not consistent throughout but an ongoing process. On first reading, the poems stanzas seem to belong to separate plots … Read more

Ted Hughes’ Presentation of Animals

Hughes is well-known for his nature poetry and use of animal symbolism. In both “The Jaguar” and “Hawk Roosting”, the animals symbolize different human characteristics while remaining, on the surface, an in-depth, fantastic poem about the animal itself. “The Jaguar” is written on a literal level about a trip to the zoo. The point of … Read more

Describing the Indescribable in Christabel

How do we describe an emotion? Happiness, sadness, and fear, all simply words which we tie to certain “feelings,” observable by bodily functions — flushed cheeks, tears, goosebumps, the production and distribution of certain hormones. As humans our emotions manifest as art, but when the chosen medium is through language, how accurate are our descriptions … Read more

Rosebuds and Sinuous Rills: The Romantic Fragment of Orientalism in Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s “Kubla Khan” and Citizen Kane by Orson Welles

The debate over the fragmentary nature of Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem “Kubla Khan” has continued from the time the poem was written in 1797 to the present day. Some critics believe “Kubla Khan” to be a complete work in its totality, while others argue that it is merely an unfinished fragment, a curiosity. The reductionist … Read more

Immortality in Thomas Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard”

Thomas Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” is a melancholic poem that considers the possibility of immortality for the people buried in the churchyard the speaker visits. Although previous sections of the poem explore different ideas, such as the speaker’s remorse for those who passed their earthly lives ignobly and seemingly without consequence, “Elegy” … Read more

“Lines composed a few miles above Tintern Abbey”

Wordsworth’s pastoral poem “Lines composed a few miles above Tintern Abbey” eloquently expresses the poet’s feelings of ambivalence regarding maturation, nature, and modern society. The poem is formatted in a distinct approach that serves to highlight the poet’s own conflicting emotions. Wordsworth initiates the composition by presenting himself as revisiting a beautiful and sprawling landscape … Read more

Similarities and Differences of Jonson’s “To Penshurst” and Marvell’s “Upon Appleton House”

Andrew Marvell’s “Upon Appleton House” and Ben Jonson’s “To Penshurst” share similarities characteristic of the English “Country House” poem, but they also contain notable differences from each other. Both “To Penshurst” and “Upon Appleton House” describe the respective estates and family life of the poets’ patrons in idyllic terms. An admiration for the aristocracy also … Read more

“My English Grandmother” Still Lives: Tone, Perspective, and Emotional Progression

William Carlos Williams’s poem “The Last Words of My English Grandmother” departs from traditional elegies in many ways. The composition does not follow elegiac meter or structure, though normally a poem with elegiac meter should consist of four iambs and have elegiac couplets. (For its part, the elegiac couplet should consist of dactylic hexameter followed … Read more

The Physical and Psychological Hunger Represented in “No More Cake Here” and “Why I Hate Raisins” By Natalie Diaz

The concept of hunger can be used to represent many different things, whether it be in the physical, emotional, or conceptual sense. In Natalie Diaz’s poetry, hunger serves to represent ideas in both physical and psychological ways. She places the concept of hunger skillfully throughout her works in When My Brother Was An Aztec, so … Read more

Preserve and Pass It On: Comparing Tombs and Lais in Marie de France’s Laustic and Yonec

In both Yonec and Laustic, Marie de France describes tombs that house the unfulfilled love of her characters. The tombs function to preserve the physical bodies of a love that could not be fulfilled during the characters’ lives. In both lais, the tombs are overwhelmingly beautiful, ornate, and described in stunning detail, like a piece … Read more

Sappho and Emily Dickinson: A Literary Analysis

All mediums of poetry are specific and unique among each other. They have different attributes that can be mastered in order to deliver a perfect execution. However, when it comes to the ancient genre of lyrical poetry, these attributes are based around a certain form of meter and emotional content. Like the lyrics of regular … Read more

“Her Darling One Wish would be Heard”: How Dramatic Monologue Illustrates Distorted Rationality in “Porphyria’s Lover” and “My Last Duchess”

Of the consequences of maintaining an obsessive nature, its ability to cloud rational judgements and encourage humanity to surrender to his darkest, innermost impulses serves as one of its most tragic aspects. Robert Browning explores this concept through his poems “Porphyria’s Lover” and “My Last Duchess.” Following the entry of Porphyria into the narrator’s cottage … Read more

Providential History Proved in ‘Judith’

Throughout the Old English poem Judith, the poet goes to great lengths to paint a clear and decided picture of providential history. A providential view of history leaves no doubt that God is involved and that He clearly favors one side over the other. In Judith, it is exceedingly evident that God has taken an … Read more

The Clear Value of Romantic Love: “Soeur Louise de la Misericorde,” “Twice,” and Other Poems

The idea of romantic love being presented as invariably negative in 19th century literature is questionable to some extent. Romantic love is often characterised as being damaging and hurtful in Rossetti’s poetry through the contrast with divine love in poems such as ‘Soeur Louise de la Misericorde’ and ‘Twice’, supported by her religious devotion and … Read more

Definition Of All Prose

Prose is mostly a Kind of speech with no development that’s metrical. It implements commonplace association, somewhat than composition, corresponding to, additionally an all stream of language.Regular The vast majority of women and men write and suppose, & tackle has been spoken into professional se in prose form. Prose consists of of full paragraphs, that … Read more

"Break break break" Analysis

‘Break break break’ is a poem that was published in 1842, during the early Victorian epoch. It explores Tennyson’s feelings of loss concerning the death of his friend, Arthur Hallam. The poem syncretises the perpetual cycle of nature with the speaker’s bitter desire for the world to stop. The purpose of this poem could be … Read more

Admiration in Carol Anne Duffy’s ‘ Before you were mine’ and Seamus Heaney’s ‘Follower’

Both ‘Before you were mine’ by Carol Anne Duffy and ‘Follower’ by Seamus Heaney present the theme of admiration through their poems. As they both capture the parent-child relationship through the child’s perspective showcasing how they each viewed their parent as a role model whilst growing up. Both poems express the admiration they have for … Read more

The Tree of Language: Biblical Concepts in Hecht’s “Naming the Animals” and Shapiro’s “The Recognition of Eve”

Modern American poets, contending with the disruption of traditionalism in culture, thought that the preoccupation that arose concerning the confines, possibilities, and influence of words that allows for the cultivation of twentieth-century art advanced both poetry and prose. The poets concern themselves with the notion that the agency of communication through words is inexorable yet … Read more

Anna Barbauld’s “Eighteen Hundred and Eleven”

Divisions within Barbauld’s Eighteen Hundred and Eleven Anna Barbauld’s Eighteen Hundred and Eleven demonstrates Romantic-era Cosmopolitanism’s promotion of a global consciousness and transnational empathy. Cosmopolitan theory emerged as a result of Napoleon’s growing power, English imperialism and the development of a global economy. This theory, however, is marked by the limitations and stereotypes of the … Read more

Analyzing “Fin Amors” in Fountain of Love and the Book of the Duchess

Fin amors, or refined loving is a staple within medieval literature. Showcasing the romantic relationships of noblemen, fin amors expresses the struggles and games that are played between a man and woman during courtship. Similar to unrequited love, fin amors focuses itself around women holding the power in a relationship, and therefore remaining aloof to … Read more

Chaucer’s ‘Wife of Bath’s Tale’ as a Revival of Marie de France’s ‘Lanval’

If one was asked to name the epitome of medieval English literature, it is very likely that the answer would be Geoffrey Chaucer. Indeed, this world-wide known poet has played a major role in the development of the English language thanks to his masterpiece The Canterbury Tales, among many others. However, a genius seldom comes … Read more