Donne Poetry

What poem is the line ‘I wonder by my troth, what thou and I’ from?
The Good-Morrow

What semantic field features in ‘The Good-Morrow’? Give examples of the words featuring.
Infantile imagery – ‘childishly’, ‘wean’d’

In ‘The Good-Morrow’, what does the ‘seven sleepers’ den’ refer to contextually?
Cave in Ephesus – 7 Christians fell asleep, walled up then woke 200 years later once the Roman empire had been christianised

In ‘The Good-Morrow’, whilst the past tense used when discussing the infantile lexis suggests the character has matured, what at the end of the first stanza contradicts this? What character traits are highlighted in this moment?
‘If ever any beauty I did see,//Which I desired, and got’ – bravado and pride

In ‘The Good-Morrow’ what does ‘all pleasures fancies be’ mean?
Potentially that he can identify real, true love now he has experienced it

What indicates that the love reflected upon at the start of ‘The Good-Morrow’ was sexual? Hinted at due to phonetic similarly.
‘sucked on country pleasures childishly’

At the start of the second stanza in ‘The Good-Morrow’, what does ‘waking souls’ connote? What period does it link to?
– similar to epiphany, eyes opening, rebirth, reflective of the renaissance period

What does the 3 stanza method of development in the poem ‘The Good-Morrow’ do?
Provides metaphysical logical progression and display of argument.
Perhaps reflective of the argument style adopted during Donne’s time as a lawyer/studying law

What does the repetition of ‘let’ at the start of 3 lines in ‘The Good-Morrow’ do?
It adds pace, repetition in this anaphora

What does the use of ‘we’ and ‘our’ do in ‘The Good-Morrow’?
They are joined together, emphasising their relationship

How is apostrophe used in ‘The Sun Rising’?
The Sun is personified and addressed, seen through the capitalisation and the address of ‘busy old fool’ which connotes mortality, impermanence, derogatory and arrogant

What is the tone of ‘The Sun Rising’?
Argumentative, through use of interrogatives and imperatives, witty and playful, but also condescending e.g. ‘thou’ to address sun is personal, degrading

What is the final couplet of the first stanza in ‘The Sun Rising’? What is the effect?
‘Love, all alike, no season knows, nor clime,//Nor hours, days, months, which are the rags of time’ – implies their love is eternal, defies mortality, but within this, it also shows the narrator’s consciousness of this fate, Achilles heel, weakness, drawn out last line may be defiance towards the ticking clock of time, slowing the pace

In ‘The Sun Rising’, how does Donne try to convince the reader that the outside world is insignificant in this stanza?
– ‘windows’ and ‘curtains’ symbolise divide from world
– ‘ants’ reiterate the insignificance
– ‘why dost thou thus?’ – as if interrupted

What ocular imagery is present in the second stanza of ‘The Sun Rising’?
‘wink’, ‘sight’, ‘blind’

What does the line in ‘The Sun Rising’, ‘If her eyes have not blinded thine’ do?
Hyperbolic description of her beauty, idealised Petrarchan love

What does the reference to ‘Indias of spice and mine’ imply?
– reference to colonisation – foreign/exotic
– possessions unnecessary, she’s merely ‘all states’/conquest to be exploited

What is the affect of the monosyballic end line of the second stanza ‘And thou shalt hear: All here in one bed lay’ in ‘The Sun Rising’?
– defiant
-insecure?

What does the line ‘She’is all states, and all princes I’ do in ‘The Sun Rising’?
She is objectified, however syntax puts her first on the line, implying her underlying superiority

What does the line ‘Nothing else is’ do in ‘The Sun Rising’?
It emphasises the disconnect from the lovers due to the enjambment, nothing else exists

In ‘The Sun Rising’, what implies that all other love is false in the third stanza?
– ‘Princes do but play us’
– ‘mimic’
– ‘all wealth alchemy’ – superficial – being wealthy doesn’t matter

What does the final line of ‘The Sun Rising’ ‘This bed thy centre is, these walls, thy sphere’ suggest?
Ptolemaic viewpoint
– whole couple is too artificial, rehearsed, perfect in form

Which technical effect is adopted to add drama to the beginning of ‘The Canonization’? Hint: it’s metaphysical!
Begins in media res
Abrupt, dramatic, one sided argument – rhetorical questions e.g ‘who says my tears have overflow’d his ground?’

Rhyme scheme of ‘The Canonization’?
abbaccca – repetition of ‘of’ and rhyme scheme represent social restrictions

What, contextually, could ‘The Canonization’ be referring to with ‘ruin’d fortune flout’?
Donne’s clandestine marriage 1601 with Ann More, resulting in dismissal from secretary of Lord Keeper and 1 decade not allowed any job

What ends the first stanza of ‘The Canonization’?
‘let me love’ an emphatic assertion

What is the effect of love at the start and end of the stanzas in ‘The Canonization’?
It frames the poem, world surrounded by love?

Effect of ‘us’ and ‘we’ usage in ‘The Canonization’?
Emphasis of unity

‘we two being one’ and ‘we die and rise’ in ‘The Canonization’?
reference to sex – paradox between this desire and divine love

What semantic field features in ‘The Canonization’?
– Death vs immortality – ‘phoenix’, ‘urn’, ‘tombs’, ‘hearse’

What is the conceit in ‘The Canonization’?
‘Us canonized for love’ lovers and saints compared

Lines beginning with ‘and’ in ‘The Canonization’?
Colloquial, metaphysical

What is the rhyme scheme found in ‘The Flea’? The affect?
aabbccddd – Tetrameter, Pentameter, Tet, Pent, Tet, Pent, Tet, Pent, Pent – restrictive, rhythmic, methodical, like his argument (metaphysical) , as implied by use of 3 stanzas, popular form of Donne’s, varied rhyme – circular argument, flea starts and ends with nothing

‘mark but this flea’ in ‘The Flea’ is what sort of address?
Direct address – as if argument, discussion?

What is the conceit used in ‘The Flea’?
Flea as church, where the two lovers’ blood have already mingled (persuasive argument for the woman to want to make love to him), fleas were often adopted in renaissance literature in witty, funny love poetry in all countries

What is the tone of ‘The Flea’?
Insistent and arrogant, pace becomes faster as argument progresses, then slows when argument is reversed

What are the connotations of ‘our two bloods mingled be’ in ‘The Flea’?
sexual connotations – blood mingling

‘Where we almost, yea, more married than are’ ‘The Flea’?
caesura – new idea captures him

What does ‘Purpled’ suggest in ‘The Flea’?
Royalty and romance

Who makes most powerful statement in ‘The Flea’?
The female, non-verbally, his words are responses to her actions

In ‘The Apparition”s first line ‘When by thy scorn, O murd’ress, I am dead’ what does ‘scorn’ suggest? What about the caesura?
– Scorn killing him is hyperbolic and adds to humourous/playful tone
– Caesure emphasises female character throughout the oem (murd’ress to feign’d vestal to poor aspen wretch)

What are the connotations of ‘feign’d vestal’ in ‘The Apparition’?
Not a virgin for long, pretending to be a virgin, jibe/compliment about sexual appetite

What are other moments of insulting/complimenting the woman’s sexual appetite in ‘The Apparition’?
‘And in false sleep will from thee shrink’ – exhausted, had enough
‘cold quicksilver sweat’ – cure for syphillis

What are the connotations of ‘poor aspen wretch’ in ‘The Apparition’?
Breaks her down from powerful, to fake, to weak
– trembling, loses power

What is the effect of the line ‘What I will say, I will not tell thee now’ in ‘The Apparition’?
adds suspense – removes opportunity for closure

What is the effect of the end three lines of the apparition rhyming? ‘spent’ ‘repent’ ‘innocent’
– part of legal semantic field
– incantation like
– playful
– emotive language – harsh-sounding assonance, spitting

What makes the tone of ‘The Apparition’ sound relentless/rant-like?
First 13 lines are a single sentence

In Donne’s Poem, ‘The Relic’, what are relics?
Bones or belongings of saints – important part of late medieval Catholicism

What does the line ‘Some second guest to entertain’ do to ‘The Relic”s tone?
Turns it wryly ironic from jokey to serious tone at end

What does the line ‘to more than one a bed’ suggest in ‘The Relic’?
Women like sharing beds – critical?

What line alters the tone of ‘The Relic’ to more macabre/sinister? What is the lines effect?
‘A bracelet of bright hair about the bone’
-juxtaposition between dark connotations/death of bone and precious connotations of jewellery item
– ‘bright’ love still alive?
– superstitious
– alliteration = powerful emphasis
– paradox between love and mortality

What does ‘at the last busy day’ refer to in ‘The Relic’?
– haste/agitation
– opposite of hyperbole, undermines day, witty, humourous
– peace in heaven
– holy/spiritual

How does the second stanza of ‘The Relic’ begin?
By hypothesising – ‘If this fall in a time, or land,//where mis-devotion doth command’

What does the line ‘to make us relics’ imply in ‘The Relic’?
– acceptance by the church
– proposterous claims
– idealised death

‘Thou shalt be a Mary Magdalene, and I//A something else thereby’ – what does this refer to? (The Relic)
– Jesus’ lover – allegedly prostitute before sainthood OR Mrs Magdalen Herbert during Donne’s time at Egerton
– Is he a customer then? Comic wit
– Is he christ? Cheeky, egotistical – sets hierarchy

What does the part ‘All women shall adore us; and some men’ imply in ‘The Relic’?
The women are inferior, gullible

What does the repetition of ‘miracles’ in ‘The Relic’ do?
– makes miracles commonplace
– mocking/disregard/undermine

What semantic fields are present in ‘The Relic’?
– Legal past reference’late law’
– Religious ‘guardian angels

What does ‘perchance might kiss, but not between those meals;’ imply in ‘The Relic’?
– a virtuous, platonic relationship
– sexually innocent – enhanced by ‘angel’

What do the final 2 lines of ‘The Relic’ suggest?
‘All measure, and all language, I should pass,//Should I tell what a miracle she was’
– wistfulness/nostalgia
– uncharacteristically saying ‘all words fail me’

What form is ‘Holy Sonnet I: Thou Hast Made Me’? What is the rhyme scheme?
Petrarchan sonnet with a rhyme scheme abbaabbacdcdee

What is the tone of the octave in ‘Holy Sonnet I: Thou Hast Made Me’ with lots of moving downwards, below imagery?
Despairing
– ‘decay’
– ‘run to death’
– ‘like yesterday’ moving into the past

What is the tone used to address God in ‘Holy Sonnet I: Thou Hast Made Me’?
Interrogatives/imperatives = ‘shall thy work decay?’ and ‘repair me now’
– authoritative
– accusatory?

What is chiasmus?
When two or more clauses are related to each other through a reversal of structure – ‘I run to death, death meets me’

In the line in ‘Holy Sonnet I: Thou Hast Made Me’ ‘I run to death, death meets me’ – How is the speaker and death depicted here?
– reflecting one another/paralleling the same behavior
– colliding

What is the affect of the frequent alliteration of ‘d’ in ‘Holy Sonnet I: Thou Hast Made Me’?
‘death’ ‘dim’ ‘doth’ etc. – plosive
– powerful
– connoting anger felt towards God?

What is the shift of tone in the sestet of ‘Holy Sonnet I: Thou Hast Made Me’, typical of the volta?
The speaker now seems to be drawing his soul away from hell and towards heaven, seen through the frequent association to upwards movement e.g. ‘rise’ ‘wing’ ‘above’

Despite the hope in the sestet of ‘Holy Sonnet I: Thou Hast Made Me’, can you find evidence that the speaker still despairs in his inadequacy? The modal verb ‘may’ in line 13 rather than ‘can’ is one example, grace might be able to save him from the devil’s ‘art’ but there’s no certainty or conviction.
dependency ‘that not one hour myself I can sustain’

In the first two lines of ‘Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud’, how is anthropomorphism and apostrophising used?
The speaker addresses Death as an equal, not something that is ‘Mighty and Dreadful’

Contextually when was ‘Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud’ written?
Whilst Donne was sick with smallpox when there was still no vaccination

In ‘Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud’, what does the tone to the opening quatrain suggest?
– rhyme scheme is immediately broken down, defying expectations (e.g. that to die, attitudes towards death)
– undermines death, breaks down stigma
– death, although personified, isn’t capitalized
– not necessarily viewing self as superior – defiant – assertive

What does the caesura in the second quatrain in ‘Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud’ do?
– slows pace – restful, lack of fear, defiance in this state

What does the image of God as a slave in ‘Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud’ suggest?
– role reversal, liberating for speaker, normally death itself would be seen as having slaves themselves
– alteration of perspective, death now fulfills roles for others, condemned to role as opposed to having the power to choose

What is the purpose of the use of anaphora in the sestet?
repetition of ‘and’ at the start of a line is colloquial and shows not being intimidated by death, degrading
– feels like train of thought/stream of conciousness

Which image recurs in the final couplet of ‘Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud’?
death and dying’
– paradox
– contradictory – whole poem’s purpose is to tell death that they have little power and the speakers suggests an indifference towards death, then ends with the ultimate punishment for death to be death itself

How does the monosyllabic last words of ‘Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud’ reflect the tone? ‘death, thou shalt die’
– definite, assertive
– almost command like
– spitting, confident

What does the combination of the Petrarchan and Shakespearean sonnet form in ‘Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud’ imply?
– defiance of traditional form/expectations – perhaps defying death/typical attitudes towards death

In ‘Holy Sonnet XIV: Batter my heart’, what imagery is present?
Violent imagery e.g. ‘knock’ ‘o’erthrow’, ‘defend’

What are the conceits that feature in ‘Holy Sonnet XIV: Batter my heart’? – 3 incarnations of god – main paradox: a loving God can be violent and punitive; this is necessary as cleansing process to enable rebirth
– tinker mending pots – mending him with God’s violence to renew him as a person ‘make me new’
– Speaker as town under siege from Devil even though God should be ruler ‘like an usurp’d town’
– Speaker as lover promised to devil, desires God as lover ‘Yet dearly I love you….But am betroth’d unto your enemy’
– ‘Except you enthral me, never shall be free,//Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me’ – woman wanting to be ravished (rape? Masochistic bride) – feminine weakness, subordinate to God/humble unlike inferior women to him – constant state of flux/insecurity – ALSO semantic field of entrapment – sexual imagery – unlike early lovers of Donne being women, now God – shows transition

What is the affect of lists ‘knock, breathe, shine’ ‘break blow burn’ in ‘Holy Sonnet XIV: Batter my heart’?
– Second is plosive
– monosyballic phonological devices – violent/active verbs emphasised

What is the effect of the complex rhyme scheme in ‘Holy Sonnet XIV: Batter my heart’?
Complex thought process – more emotional than thoughtful

What is the tone of the poem ‘Holy Sonnet XIV: Batter my heart’?
Very serious

What is the rhyme scheme of ‘Holy Sonnet XVII: Since She Whom I Loved’?
abcaabbadedeff – confusing – different rhyme scheme = actual feelings

What semantic field features in ‘Holy Sonnet XVII: Since She Whom I Loved’?
Water – ‘thirst’ ‘streams’ ‘thirsty’
– tears?
– necessary for life
– unknown
-changing states/liminality/death/life

What is the sestet sentence type in ‘Holy Sonnet XVII: Since She Whom I Loved’?
A question ‘But why should I beg more love’

What is the repeated anaphora ‘and’ affect in ‘Holy Sonnet XVII: Since She Whom I Loved’?
– colloquial, undermining

In the first quatrain of ‘Holy Sonnet XVII: Since She Whom I Loved’, what is the view?
‘since she whom I lov’d hath paid her last debt (rhymes with ‘wholly on heavely things my mind is set’ – frame own views with these socially acceptable ones)
‘my good is dead’ – resentment ‘her soul early into heaven ravised’ – stealing wife/clear sexual connotations -God as mortal creature with earthly desires

Corns quote – Donne on love
‘Donne sceptically challenges this formula of male/female relations.’

Mallet quote – Donne’s dismissal of Petrarchism
‘The immediate consequence of this dismissal of Petrarchism is that Donne’s love poetry shows considerable appetite and energy’ – dances within confines of structure though

Metaphysical quotes
– ‘metaphysician less interested in emotion than intellection’ Iiona Bell
– ‘The Difficulty is in the syntax’ Petrucci