Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Forget Bryon, Check out Bradstreet

I’m not one for super complex poetry because honestly even if I am able to arrive at an understanding of its meaning, I feel there is no true way to know what the author meant.

I remember my English teacher in high school for junior year was a real stickler for us simply soaking up and then spitting out her own interpretations of famous poems by Shakespeare, Yeats, Cummings, etc. and that always frustrated me.

For this reason, below is my favorite love poem of all time. 

Anne Bradstreet was the first woman to be recognized as poet in the New World. The above picture of her is rather woeful. It’s a picture of a painting of her at work. So maybe her expression is due to the long hours she had to sit for this painting to be rendered.

But moving along this poem is a bit Christian (which isn’t a negative thing necessarily), but to me it says all one would want to when pledging your undying love. I like how as a woman she doesn’t appear meek or too flowery. I feel this poem is all the more meaningful for its succinct, but also dramatic prose.


by: Anne Bradstreet (c.1612-1672)

I ever two were one, then surely we.
If ever man were lov'd by wife, then thee.
If ever wife was happy in a man,
Compare with me, ye women, if you can.
I prize thy love more than whole Mines of gold 
Or all the riches that the East doth hold.
My love is such that Rivers cannot quench,
Nor ought but love from thee give recompetence.
Thy love is such I can no way repay.
The heavens reward thee manifold, I pray.
Then while we live, in love let's so persever
That when we live no more, we may live ever."

No comments:

Post a Comment