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First Love - Love Poetry Coursework

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Love Poetry Coursework The two poems I have chosen to study for my coursework are "A Woman to Her Lover", and "First Love". The reason I have chosen to study these two poems is due to the vast contrast between them, and how they represent two entirely different examples of love. "First Love" by John Clare was written in the 19th century. The poem is written in rhyme rhythm ABABCDCD. It is a poem about how the poet had fallen in love but his love was unrequited. The poet sees a girl for the first time, and immediately seems to fall in love, making it seem like more like a crush, rather than real love. The poet mistakenly believes that she loves him back, and she feels the same way about him. First love has a simple rhyming scheme and uses very basic language to show the innocence of the man it is happening to. "A Woman to Her Lover", written by Christina Walsh, is a very sophisticated piece of poetry with no set rhyming scheme. It is about a woman who has received a proposal of marriage from a man and is considering all of the reasons why he wants to marry her. ...read more.


This is symbolic for the disregard of the rules of patriarchal society and it seems as though women want to break free from the conventions of society, and this is a metaphor for the poem in general. The second poem 'First Love' is a romantic love poem. The poem deals with a man that has been struck down with love for the first time - 'I never was struck before that hour, with love so sudden and sweet.' This implies he is experiencing love for the first time. Even though love is affecting him mentally, it also starts to affect him physically. We can see this in line 6 - 'My legs refused to walk away.' 'First Love', is a story of unrequited love, and has a sombre tone. John Clare felt something he had never experienced before, when he saw this women. He had never before, felt anything for a woman like he had done at this moment. It was his first time experiencing love, as he stated "I never was struck before that hour." We can also tell that it was quick, and hit him instantly - "With love so sudden and sweet." ...read more.


I feel this poem correctly displays different sorts or marriage, and the reasons for it. In Clare's poem, the man's life turned to clay, as he was not familiar with the sensation of love, and it demoralised him. He grew embarrassed as blood rushed to his face. As opposed to the intelligence and understanding of love shown in 'A woman to her lover', his was basic and confused. Both poems intend to show how it feels to fall in love, but I think they are rather unsuccessful. First Love showed love as an awful thing and used negative words to describe it, which a minority may believe to be true. Love may be frightening but not nearly as much as it is portrayed in the poem. On the contrary in 'A Woman to Her Lover', it is shown as an awful thing, similarly to First Love but it then turns to show the benefits as well, which makes it more realistic. It also uses real situations, making it more believable and honest. Of the two poems, I believe 'A Woman to Her Lover' is far more successful and plausible. I think this is because it shows different situations, and responses to them, thus making the poem far more comprehensible and realistic. ?? ?? ?? ?? Kasim Hassan ...read more.

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