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A Light Woman Analysis

Author: poem of Robert Browning Type: poem Views: 42

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So far as our story approaches the end,

  Which do you pity the most of us three?—

My friend, or the mistress of my friend

  With her wanton eyes, or me?


My friend was already too good to lose,

  And seemed in the way of improvement yet,

When she crossed his path with her hunting-noose

  And over him drew her net.


When I saw him tangled in her toils,

  A shame, said I, if she adds just him

To her nine-and-ninety other spoils,

  The hundredth for a whim!


And before my friend be wholly hers,

  How easy to prove to him, I said,

An eagle's the game her pride prefers,

  Though she snaps at a wren instead!


So, I gave her eyes my own eyes to take,

  My hand sought hers as in earnest need,

And round she turned for my noble sake,

  And gave me herself indeed.


The eagle am I, with my fame in the world,

  The wren is he, with his maiden face.

—You look away and your lip is curled?

  Patience, a moment's space!


For see, my friend goes shaling and white;

  He eyes me as the basilisk:

I have turned, it appears, his day to night,

  Eclipsing his sun's disk.


And I did it, he thinks, as a very thief:

  "Though I love her—that, he comprehends—

"One should master one's passions, (love, in chief)

  "And be loyal to one's friends!"


And she,—she lies in my hand as tame

  As a pear late basking over a wall;

Just a touch to try and off it came;

  'Tis mine,—can I let it fall?


With no mind to eat it, that's the worst!

  Were it thrown in the road, would the case assist?

'Twas quenching a dozen blue-flies' thirst

  When I gave its stalk a twist.


And I,—what I seem to my friend, you see:

  What I soon shall seem to his love, you guess:

What I seem to myself, do you ask of me?

  No hero, I confess.


'Tis an awkward thing to play with souls,

  And matter enough to save one's own:

Yet think of my friend, and the burning coals

  He played with for bits of stone!


One likes to show the truth for the truth;

  That the woman was light is very true:

But suppose she says,—Never mind that youth!

  What wrong have I done to you?


Well, any how, here the story stays,

  So far at least as I understand;

And, Robert Browning, you writer of plays,

  Here's a subject made to your hand!

Submitted by Venus


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

.: :.

its about a frivolous woman who flirts with the speaker\'s friend.the speaker who assumes the innocent friend is being taken in by the woman,steps in and diverts her attention to him and wins her heart.through the course of the poem we see that it is the speaker indeed who\'s more \"light\" than the woman- \"she lies in my hand as tame as a pear\"-this tells us of her genuineness.the friend is to be pitied the most since he was let down by both the speaker as well as the woman.in the end,it is said that this poem is made for robert browning since things like this interest him and not things like truth.

| Posted on 2010-09-14 | by a guest

.: :.

i cant analyise this for anything!
its way to complicated. any help?

| Posted on 2010-02-19 | by a guest

.: :.

wa-hay hay. I am so good. It allowed my rude comment ;D mwah ha ha hah.

| Posted on 2010-01-27 | by a guest

.: :.

This poem is shit. I am being forced to read it for crappy English Lit.

| Posted on 2010-01-27 | by a guest

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