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Compare and contrast the poems 'La Belle Dame Sans Merci' and 'The Daemon Lover'

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Introduction

Compare and contrast the poems 'La Belle Dame Sans Merci' and 'The Daemon Lover' Love often drives people to do abnormal actions. In 'La Belle Dame Sans Merci', the unnamed knight has a strange vision of having sex with a fairy, while 'The Daemon Lover' describes a man returns to his former lover and finally dies with her together. Although these two poems are written by different people and different time, they both shares common elements. Despite the theme of love, the technical details are similar with a clear rhyming scheme and fixed stanza lengths. Both poems are written in the form of 'ballad', which is a short poem with a storyline. They both contains archaic wordings which are no longer used, e.g. ...read more.

Middle

In both poems, the themes 'love' and 'death' are illustrated. In Daemon Lover, the love of the woman can be seen when she abandons her current husband and babies, fleeing with his former lover. However, death at last reaches her when the 'devil' decides to sink the ship and kill both of them. In La Belle Dame Sans Merci, the knight has of course shown some degree of love towards the fairy, otherwise he won't have sex with her. Yet, as he realised in his dream, the fairy has him in the charm. There are signs of death in the poem, e.g. "lily" which is a symbol of death at that time, also his illustration of paleness and his "withering". ...read more.

Conclusion

which increases the pace of the poem. La Belle Dame Sans Merci, on the other hand, has a weaker rhyming scheme (ABCB), which increases the mysterious feeling of the poem. The stanza length in Daemon Lover is longer (8+6) with more syllables, giving us a better impression of a ballad. Contrasting, La Belle Dame Sans Merci has slightly shorter stanza lengths and less syllables in each line. To conclude, even though La Belle Dame Sans Merci is written in the early 19th century while the Daemon Lover is written in the early 20th century, they share common elements. Both poems are ballads and, in a way, archaic. There are signs of love and sex as well. However, the themes and technical details are slightly different, e.g. the rhyming scheme and stanza lengths. ?? ?? ?? ?? Adrian Tam (G) ...read more.

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