John Donne: Metephisical Poets
The poet John Donne is a well renowned Metaphysical Poet as well as the founder of Metaphysical poets.
Donne was born January 22, 1572, in London, England. Donne was well known for implementing mortal paradox into his poems. Many of his poems have a long background and all relate to events and people within his life. From growing up in a religious family, having questioning religion, becoming aMinister in the Anglican Church and dean of Saint Paul’s Cathedral many of Donne’s poems have been influenced by his religious beliefs. Along with religion, many of Donne’s poems have been influencing his life that was filled with sorrow and love. One point in Donne’s life where it was seen as him writing his best work was in “In 1593, John Donne’s brother, Henry, was convicted of Catholic sympathies and died in prison soon after.
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“(“Bio.Com.” Bio.com. ) The incident led Donne to question his Catholic faith he grew up in and lead to much inspiration. In 1601, Donne secretly married “Anne More, the sixteen-year-old niece of Lady Egerton” (“Bio.com.” Bio.com. ).As punishment for this marriage, Donne was briefly imprisoned. During this time, he wrote many poems that were influenced by the time of the imprisonment.
Donne’s wife died shortly after their marriage in “1617 at thirty-three years old shortly after giving birth to their twelfth child”(“Bio.Com.” Bio.com. ), but sadly along with the death of Anna, their last child was stillborn. This point in time of his life was documented through his writings that were a part of “The Holy Sonnets”.
Donne’s health started to go down and though harsh sickness Donne wrote””Devotions upon Emergent Occasions,” published in 1624″(” Bio.Com.” Bio.com. ), not long after as Donne’s heath kept going down and getting worse Donne became obsessed with the thought of death and delivered a pre-funeral aldermen shortly before he died in 1631.
Donne’s poems use literary devices and real life background to tell a story of his life and the life of others. Donne has created many poems that are seen as influential works two of which are Good Morrow and The Dream, both of which are poems of love and have to mean beneath the surface. The first stanza of Donne’s poem Good Morrow expresses how the lovers were before they fell in love. This is expressed in the form of questions to the women in the relationship. How they were is exaggerated as them being children and indulging in pleasuresuntil they fell in love. Along with the reference of being childish is an allusion to a Syrian legend where persecuted Christians slept in a cave for several hundred years know as “Seven sleepers”.
This allusion to the Seven Sleepers is to make a point of them being trapped asleep until they found each other in love. The end stated that the women he “desired and got” had pleasures fancies but that the love was her dream. The second stanza expresses how their love is so strong that jealousy could not tear it apart because the love they have for one another keeps their eyes from wandering. theirlove makes “one little room an everywhere”meaning the love they have may seem small but is so true it’s everywhere. The last three lines express that the two are not interested in looking to go to anyone else but that together they are one world where the always have one another. The last stanza states that he can see the love in her face is true and honest.
“Where can we find two better hemispheres,/ Without sharp north, without declining west?”, refers to the thought of them being one world like in the second stanza. With the two hemispheres being one, and not coming apart refers to the love and how it keeps them united and whatever they did not like died away into only love. There love is so their own that it will not slack or be torn apart. Within Good Morrow, there are many elements that create the flow and meaning to the poem. One of which is the allusion to the “Seven Sleepers den” the purpose for putting this in is add an emphasis on the idea of their lives not starting till they fell in love and found one another because it was as if they were waking up from a curse and starting their lives together with the curse lifted.
The second stanza there is personification saying “good-morrow to our waking souls” personifies their souls as being alive and walking together in the morning. The way the literary devices are used create a poem that flows with imagery and lots of meaning to it. The second poem The Dream starts off by saying “Dear love” which addresses who the poem is written to and the first verse also shows the dream the writer has been extremely importantbut for his love he would break off his dream. The dream is expressed as powerful and more than a fantasy and should be treated as something much more real. The writer states to his love that she may have woke him but that his dream was not broken just merely postponed the dream.
The women the poem is addressed to is faithful enough to think she could make dreams come true and “fables histories”. The thought of the women makes the writer realize that he must rest his own dreams so they may have dreams together. The second verse changes from the thought of dreams to the thought of the women when the poem starts off with a simile comparing his love’s eyes to “Lightning, or a taper’s light”. At first sight, he saw that in truth she is an Angel and to him she understands his heart that is even more than just the Angel he, at first, thought she was. She knew his dreams and his thoughts and he soon learned of her joy that would awaken him.
He expresses how he learned that she was much more than an all-knowing Angel. The last verse shifts back to dreams once again showing how the women left and her leaving leads to him doubting her love for him still being honest. The poem expresses his fear of her not returning though the line ” Love is weak when fear is equally strong”, and also shows how now after she left his dreams have changed to dreaming of her returning back to him. This poem uses literary devices that help to show imagery throughsimiles, but the true meaning comes from the poet’s background. This poem can be related to the death of Donne’s wife.
This poem was written a while after the death of Anne and expresses the loss of Donne’s wife and how he dreams of being together with her. The Dream can be taken in many ways, but the love and loss that Donne went through is strongly expressed. Even though Anne didn’t leave the way the poem’s women did but she did die to leave Donne alone without his love. This poem can be seen as Donne’s last writing to his wife before he died. Both poems by Donne have deep meanings of love and one of sorrow.
Donne’s style of writing helps to let his thoughts flow on paper and lets many relate to his poems. Even though Donne’s poems were not well known during his time they have impacted the writing of others after him.