In Bridges’ poem “EPΩ∑”, more formal language is used to shine Eros in a more of a “god-like” light. The rhyme scheme of the poem is “AABB”, which is a traditional style, and matches with Bridges’ “traditional” depiction of a god. He praises Eros, calling him the “idol of the human race” and a “tyrant of the human heart.” The use of the word “tyrant” deviates from its normal context. It’s usually used as a derogatory term, but in the poem it is used to describe Eros as the only true ruler for the human heart. These metaphors help establish Eros as an awe-inspiring figure to all. His image Eros is that of “eternal truth” and has “exuberant flesh so fair”. These descriptions of his body’s skin and his “image” make him equivalent to that of a goddess in terms of beauty and presence. Bridges looks further, and reasons that “thy body is thy mind, for in thy face is nought to find” implying that his mind is on parallel with his beauty. It also can mean that his mind and body are one in the same. The third stanza is an extension of what was said during the first line of the poem “Why hast thou nothing in thy face?” The poem specifically included that Eros doesn’t have a face, implying that he can’t have any expression. The speaker tries to understand why he can’t see Eros’ face but isn’t able to. He can only see Eros’ “unchristen’d smile.” This can be related to love itself. Although ...
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... in how Eros is seen. The rhyme schemes helped convey different feelings within the two poems. Bridges’ has a more formal and traditional rhyme scheme while Stevenson has a disjoint simple 4-line scheme. Bridges’ poem, Eros is simply admired from far away, while Stevenson’s poem has the speaker and Eros actually engage in dialogue. Both are similar however, in that they convey a message of not understanding love. In Bridges’ poem the speaker cannot fully understand love because he cannot see Eros’ face, and in Stevenson’s poem the speaker, as well as others cannot understand love, because they deceive themselves into what they think actual love is.
While it’s true that both of the poems are about Eros, the way the poets depict him are entirely different. In one way, he is seen as “the king of joy” but in another way he may be just seen as “slaves who are immortal.
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