Tuesday, October 1, 2019
Love and Lust in Most Like an Arch, When You Are Old and Other Poems Es
Love and Lust in Most Like an Arch, When You Are Old and Other Poems I have chosen to compare and contrast three "love" poems with three "lust" poems from our text, An Introduction to Poetry (9th edition, Kennedy and Gioia, Longman Publishing). I feel that poems about true love often incorporate themes of duration, unity and longevity; all lasting sentiments. Conversely, poems of a lusty nature convey the sentiment that the feeling is transitory, and must be pounced on immediately (before we get a chance to think about it too much). Love poems talk about the spiritual aspects of the subject and needing to be vulnerable to them. Lust poems seem to focus more on the physical beauty of the subject, recalling the flush of a cheek and the immediacy, the urgency of their passion. Rarely is the need to share and communicate with the subject conveyed. "Most Like an Arch This Marriage," by John Ciardi (Page 259) illustrates the lasting nature of true love by using the image of two pillars which, on their own, are "roofless around nothing" (Line 11). The words "Till we kiss I am no more than upright and unset," convey the strength and durability the speaker finds with this significant other. The image of the stones used to create this arch communicate that idea of permanence. This speaker knows that real love comes through work and compromise, and is not a quick fix. Vulnerability on both parts is also a necessity, because "It is by falling in and in we make the all-bearing point, for one another's sake, in faultless failing, raised by our own weight" (13). Love and lovers are imperfect, but exquisite in those imperfections. Cummings' "somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond" (Page 402) creates a similar th... ...e's winged chariot hurrying near" (22) is throwing the speaker into a tizzy, considering that place where "thy beauty shall no more be found" (25). And maybe these men are right (that's just what they'd like me to think!). What good does it do a woman to bite, scratch and repress her urges, only to end up where "worms shall try that long preserved virginity" (28)? Seize the day, "while thy willing soul transpires at every pore with instant fires" (35-36). I suppose we're not really trying to make a judgment, thoughÃ¢â¬ ¦just a distinction. The bottom line is that lust and passion may be very compelling forces, but they are as temporary and changeable as the beauty that inspires them. Compared to the reliable, transcendental, and lasting character of "true" love, it is obvious that the two must be approached very differently, for their natures are hardly similar at all.