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Exploring Themes in Sonnets Essay

Assignment id 1012217
Discipline Self Improvement
Assignment type Essay
Words 2983
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The six poems that I shall be comparing are: Sonnet 116, My last duchess, La Belle Dame Sans Merci, The highwayman, The lab and The ballad of Tam Lin. There's a common theme which runs through all of these poems of customs and the love of them whether it be the love lost between two fans such as in the Laboratory or a dream love such as in The ballad of Tam Lin. In La Belle Dame Sans Merci the speaker of this poem comes across a knight all alone and who is apparently dying in a field. He proceeds to ask the bad knight about the awful fate which has befallen him. The knight's reply takes up the rest of the poem; he states that one day he met a gorgeous faery in the areas. He spent the whole day with her producing her flower garlands and allowing her ride his horse. She invited him back to her fairy cave where he gently kissed her four times and she lulled him to sleep. He had a horrendous nightmare about each one the other knights and kings that the girl had previously seduced that were all now dead. He awakens alone and on the hillside. This ballad is split into 12 quatrains, each with a rhyming structure (A-B-A-C). The rhythm is an iambic tetrameter meaning every line consists of four iambs, except for from the fourth line of each quatrain where there are three iambs. The main imagery in this ballad is put in stanzas 10 and 11 during the knight's nightmare. He talks about the pale kings and princes he watched and goes into slightly dark and understated detail "I saw their starved lips in the gloam" and you truly feel as though you may see them too. Like many ballads that is like a song and starts off in quite an upbeat way when the knight is describing the glorious afternoon that he spent with the young faery, but takes qu...

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