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Compare the ways in which love is presented in pre-1915 poetry

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English coursework: Ashley Heard Compare the ways in which love is presented in pre-1915 poetry In this piece of coursework I will be comparing six different poems (pre-1915) to see the ways in which love is compared and presented. 'Porphyria's lover' written by Robert Browning the basic plot is a woman who has an obsessed lover who loves Porphyria deeply. The lover thinks that no one is good enough for her. And for some reason Porphyria cannot commit to her lover for reasons that are not stated in the poem. It could be Porphyria has already got commitments or the lover does not want to be seen with her in public. The lover is deeply obsessed with her though still 'I looked up at her eyes, happy and proud;' Although he is too obsessed and in a surprise whilst cuddling up to her grabs her hair 'In one long yellow string'. 'I wound three times her little throat around' then in a bizarre twist 'strangled her'. He was to ensure she felt no pain he, did this because he thought she was too good for anyone and he was overwhelmingly obsessed. ...read more.


This is why both the poems are alike because they both throw a surprise. This makes the poems more interesting and makes you want to read on because you wonder what other twists and turns, it can throw at you. This also builds up tension, and makes the poems more interesting by having different endings. More poems that are alike are 'How do I love thee' and 'Shall I compare thee to a summer's day'. 'How do I love thee' is written by Elizabeth Barret Browning and is simply about how someone loves someone else so much and deeply there trying to think how much they love one another. The poem tries to compare how they love each other 'I love thee to the level of every day's Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight'. The poem constantly compares everyday things to love (basically lots of similes). 'I love thee with the passion' and the poem also says that there love will just grow stronger 'shall but love thee better after death'. ...read more.


Two more poems that are the same 'Cousin Kate' and 'My last Duchess'. They are similar because they are both have something to do with being used and manipulated into a false love. In 'Cousin Kate' it says 'Your love was writ in sand' as if to say the love will get washed away after a little time. Like on the beach where you write something and it gets completely phased out by the waves. In 'My last Duchess' we can also tell the love is fake by 'The curtain I have drawn for you' the lord who used his last duchess is saying he has drawn a curtain for her so she can never look back or in to their past relationship. This gives us an impression that the lord is a cold hearted bitter man who just uses girls with no heart to love them with. Both poems use similes to show how love is making them feel, and react. Also they use the same text e.g. 'thou', they talk about their feeling e.g. 'I sit and howl at dusk'. This gives the reader an impression that they are reflecting a lot in the poem and looking back on their past lovers and emotions. ...read more.

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