'Bavarian Gentians' Explication

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Death wasn't a stranger to D.H. Lawrence so perhaps its fitting that the poem I've chosen to explicate, Bavarian Gentians (1932), was published posthumously after the author and poet succumbed

to a lengthy battle with tuberculosis. Lawrence, who wrote often of death in last months of life, recognized and, in Bavarian Gentians, alluded to the duality of existence. How summer begets winter, light begets dark, life begets death, even that Greek mythology begot the Roman's, confusing the Roman god Pluto with Hades and the Roman maiden Proserpina with her Greek equivalent Persephone. This duality features heavily throughout the poem as Lawrence references Michaelmas, the feast of St. Michael, god's archangel and feared protector against the dark and the dying compared with Pluto, the ruler of the underworld, the dark and unknown place he steals Persephone and in turn Lawrence away too.

Bavarian gentians is a freeversepoem separated into 3 parts, an introductory couplet followed by two stanzas of 10 lines each. The title, Bavarian Gentians, references an uncommon (perhaps even rare)...

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