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What Makes a Good Love Poem?

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What Makes a Good Love Poem? Verbal Cleverness / Original Language There are many different techniques that help us to make a good love poem. Throughout many of the poems that I have studied from the past five centuries, many of them use verbal cleverness mixed with original language to try and convey their own ideas of love. One such poem is William Shakespeare's Sonnet 18 in which he uses over-elaborate language to talk about his love. "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" This is a rhetorical question that is going to be answered throughout the rest of the poem. William Shakespeare is asking himself if his love is like a summer's day with all of the beauty and splendour of a summer's day. The summer's day is expressing the idea that their love has no doubts, and everything is happy and optimistic like a summer's day is. Throughout the duration of Sonnet 18, William Shakespeare uses vibrant language that helps to describe the love that he is feeling. "Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines" Shakespeare feels as though he is in 'heaven' at this point in his relationship. The eye of heaven represents the sun, and his love is bright and is shining and nothing is getting in the way. Shakespeare repeats the phrase 'eternal' and he has a reoccurring theme of 'summer' in this sonnet. He is implying that love will last for eternity. Shakespeare uses a positive viewpoint to show his undivided love. ...read more.


Andrew Marvell does not talk about his lover's beauty like a normal love poem would, but he is trying to persuade his love to go to bed with him. "Let us roll all our strength, and all our sweetness up into one ball" Andrew Marvell is saying that they should share their love now while they have the chance because if they wait too long, their looks will have gone and they may even be dead, and once they are in the grave, they will never be able to share their love. Andrew Marvell is more upfront about the love he has rather than expressing his feelings like in stereotypical love poetry. Truth / Accuracy Elizabeth Barrett Browning's poem: "How Do I Love Thee..." is accurate because she is conveying her love in ways that everyone can understand and is not trying to over-elaborate her language and complicate her true feelings, and hide her true feeling in over-complicated language. "I love thee with the breath, smiles, tears, of all my life!" She loves with very part of her life: the good times and the bad times, and no matter what is happening in her life, she is forever loving with all she has. Elizabeth Barrett Browning is saying in this poem that she is in love. "To His Coy Mistress" by Andrew Marvell is more truthful than many love poems because Andrew Marvell looks at the facts of life to base his love on, and not love itself. ...read more.


Because of his experience of relationships, John Donne, in his poem: "Lecture Upon a Shadow", knows that there are different spells in a relationship that mirror the time of day and the length of the shadows. Through his own experiences, he knows that a relationship fades and dies down after the most passionate parts of a relationship. "The morning shadows wear away, but these grow longer all the day, but oh, loves day is short, if love decay" From the lessons he has gained from his own life, John Donne knows what is going to happen. He is showing that love often changes, and can change quickly. After the passionate midday, John Donne expects his relationship to die down, and in due course, he is proved right. Sonnet 130 by William Shakespeare is a good example of a poem written from the author's own experience. In this poem, William Shakespeare recognises that, from his own insights, looks do not last and he acknowledges the brevity of beauty. William Shakespeare is rejecting hyperbole, and instead explains the true facts that he has gained from his experiences. "Coral is far more red than her lip's red; if snow be white, why then her breasts are dun" These are not the conventional ideas of beauty, because he knows from his own life, that love is rare, but beauty is irrelevant, and recognises this from his own experiences of relationships and the importance of the love compared to beauty. Throughout my time studying love poetry I have made some poems up of my own, modelled on those I have studied. (P.T.O. for my own poetry) Tom Wood 10A1 24/6/2002 Page 1 ...read more.

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