The world goes none the lamer For ought that I can see, Because this cursed trouble Has struck my days and me. The stars of heaven are steady, The founded hills remain, Though I to earth and darkness Return in blood and pain.
It consists of three quatrains and a couplet at the end. The poem was first published in Collected Poems, in an remains one of Edna St. This poem is a contemplation by the speaker on all the ways in which humans suffer for love. Millay begins by stating all the things that love is not, all the physical ways it cannot help someone in need of food, shelter, water or sleep.
In the last line the speaker comes to the conclusion that she may trade her love away, but more than likely she, as all those stated above, would not. They plainly contrast with the emotion of love, something that Millay is hoping to call attention to.
She is attempting to lessen loves importance by comparing to things one physically cannot live without. Continuing on to the second half of the first quatrain, Millay creates another metaphor, or a comparison between two unlikely elements. In this comparison, it is something a man on a sinking ship would want desperately as a way to reinforce his damaged vessel.
Love would do him little good at this critical moment. The next line is a repetition of the motions of a drowning man as he sinks below the surface only to rise up again and sink once more. The second quatrain begins with: Love can not fill the thickened lung with breath, Millay continues the comparison at the end of the first quatrain as she speaks here of death and the little good love will have in stopping it.
This second theory is reinforced by the first half of the next line: This makes it a likely disease for Millay to have chosen to contrast against love. She makes one last comparison in this quatrain, describing how love cannot set the fractured bone.
In general with these metaphors she is attempting to get across the notion that love is nothing but an emotion that can do nothing for one in a critical, life threatening situation.
This is the turning point of the sonnet, or volta. A volta is a vital point in almost all sonnets in which many things can happen.
The transition from one speaker to another, a change in opinion, or in this case, a change in perspective. After this point the speaker starts using first person to address the issue more personally. Yet many a man is making friends with death Even as I speak, for lack of love alone.
In these lines Millay references all the comparisons above, and her speaker is saying, basically, that even with all the truths that have thus far been stated, men still kill themselves because they do not have love. This line is written with a kind of disbelief as if the speaker has a hard time understanding how this could possibly be the case.
The next quatrain and final couplet are single idea contemplated by the speaker on what she might do in various situations if she had love and could give it away to save herself or assuage some kind of pain. These two scenarios mirror the ones the speaker has described in the first half of the poem, a difficult hour without food, water, or shelter, and pinned down by pain as if afflicted with a deadly disease such as tuberculosis was then.
The next line is one of the most poignant. She remembers the decisions she used to make and the resolution, or determination, that they had.
The final line of the poem is the conclusion of all of this contemplation and consideration. Vicent Millay Edna St. Vincent Millay was born in Rockland, Maine in She was raised, along with her two sisters, by a single mother.
She became involved in writing poetry at a young age and gained a scholarship to Vassar College where she became involved in theatre.
She would become one of the most respected poets in America and would win the Pulitzer Prize in for her collection of poems, The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver. Her popularity stemmed from both her remarkably crafted sonnets and her bohemian lifestyle, including her political stances, and open relationships.Background to the poem.
The sonnet form is traditionally employed to declare love for someone or something. Here, however, Edna St Vincent Millay uses the fourteen‑line form to claim that her ‘staggering brain’ can at times be overcome by lust.
This short, complete idea is a powerful statement of the speaker's uncertainty. "Love Is Not All" contains only four sentences. Placing two in the last line draws the reader's eye. Edna St. Vincent Millay Born in Her mother divorced her father, and she grew up in an all-female household.
She went to all girls' school Barnard and Vassar. If you are more interested in the best poems of Modernism, please continue reading.
If you are more interested in the history of Modernism, please click here: A Brief History of Modernism, in Timeline Form. The Top Ten Poems and Poets of Modernism "London" and "Jerusalem" by William Blake, probably.
Historical Background. Arthur O’Shaughnessy was an Irish poet who was born in London in He worked at the British Museum as an entomologist and herpetologist, though his true love was poetry, and he spent countless nights bent over thick volumes, translating French literature and writing poetry.
women poets, feminism and the sonnet in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries: an american narrative. by. jade craddock. a thesis submitted to. The comments on this post were an incredible resource and a gold mine of beautiful words and inspiration as we planned our wedding ceremony.
I don’t think the reading we ultimately chose was listed here – so I’m adding it now for any brides-to-be that dig this post up as they plan their wedding!