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Sonnet 13 - And wilt thou have me fashion into speech Analysis



Author: poem of Elizabeth Barrett Browning Type: poem Views: 23

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XIII



And wilt thou have me fashion into speech

The love I bear thee, finding words enough,

And hold the torch out, while the winds are rough,

Between our faces, to cast light on each?—

I drop it at thy feet. I cannot teach

My hand to hold my spirit so far off

From myself—me—that I should bring thee proof

In words, of love hid in me out of reach.

Nay, let the silence of my womanhood

Commend my woman-love to thy belief,—

Seeing that I stand unwon, however wooed,

And rend the garment of my life, in brief,

By a most dauntless, voiceless fortitude,

Lest one touch of this heart convey its grief






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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

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Line 1: she herself doesn't understand her feelings for him and cannot put her feelings into words. The use of the word 'speech' shows formality.
Line 2-4:The love she feels and her passion should be' illuminated' through her words which would be the 'torch' which 'casts light on their faces' 'while the winds are rough' which refers to the undetermined and confusing nature of their relationship. She also implies that her feelings and emotions must be protected.
Line 5-6: She drops at his feet; this suggests her fear and nervousness as she is incapable of being steady in front of him. She then further explains that she can not teach her hands to stay still because of the emotion her spirit feels
Line 7-8: she is unable to bring proof of her love by putting her feelings into words because what she feels is so intense, deep and complex that she herself can not put it into words.
Line 9-10: Her silence is a representation of her; this shows the societal values at the time where women were expected to be 'silent' and did not express their feelings openly.
Line 11: She is wooed by him however he still hasn't completely 'won' her over as she must keep a part of herself 'hidden' and to herself
Line 12-14: She doesn't tell Robert everything about her life because they are not 'exclusive'.

| Posted on 2018-02-27 | by a guest




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