Comparing The Passionate Shepherd To His Love, Her Reply, and Cecil Day Lewis

Comparing The Passionate Shepherd To His Love, Her Reply, and Cecil Day Lewis

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Comparing The Passionate Shepherd To His Love, Her Reply, and Cecil Day Lewis         


When looking at these three poems,  it immediately becomes noticeable that all of them are very similar.  They often share the same lines,  almost word for word,  and furthermore follow a smilar tone,  as well as having an identical rhyming pattern.  „The passionate shepherd to his love“ (poem number one)  is followed by an answer from his lover (poem number two),  and is then followed up by a further poem by Cecil Day Lewis,  which like in poem number one,  is an attempt at winning a ladies heart over,  and convincing her to devote all her love to him.

         The first poem seems to be an idyillic one,  and spends a lot of time going into the description of the surrounding nature.  Christopher Marlowe describes the countryside as being pure and beautiful,  and seems to be trying to suggest that his love is also something natural and pure.

„That hills and valley,  dales and fields,

Or woods or steepy mountain yields“

However it almost seems as though it is too good to be true,  as one knows that nature also conceals many dangers.  However he takes it further than that,  and seems to try and build up a kind of utopia for his love talking about treating her as well as he possibly can.

„And I will make thee a bed of roses,

And a thousand fragrant posies“

However the poet is now attempting to build up such a perfect image of their possible life together,  that it becomes ever more unrealistic.  The answer from the lady whose heart he is trying to win over however,  takes a far more realistic approach,  and seems to try and bring him back down to earth.  She makes him aware of the fact that time brings change,  an...


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...,  but in the closing two lines of the last stanza in poems in and three the poets once again use the same lines to express their feelings.

„If these delights thy mind may move,

Then live with me and be my Love.“

To conclude the comparison of the three given poems it must be said that they are very similar,  and in certain aspects even identical.  The only exception to this seems to be the second poem,  which was a reply to the first.  Despite talking about the same topic,  and being directly linked to the first poem,  it is very different,  as it is not attempting to proclaim the poets love,  but is turning it down.  Equally the last poem differs slightly due to different circumstances.  Yet all of them are attempting to show the reader (or the person it is meant for),  what the poets feelings towards that person is,  by using very descriptive language.

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