Essay by tanyan09College, Undergraduate October 2014

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Tanya Nieves

January 28, 2014

Poetry 270

I Can Write the Saddest Love Deity Tonight

There are many types of love as there are many diverse people. Love can be defined as a passionate affection for another person. It can define who we are. But love is known as the most powerful emotion that can embrace or poison us. Pablo Neruda's "I Can Write The Saddest Verses," and John Donne "Love's Deity" uses allusions, rhyme schemes, and diction to express their love sorrows. However, Neruda's is based on the theme of lost love and reminiscences while Donne's is based on loving a woman that doesn't reciprocate the same affection.

What is love? Could it be a lost object? Is it something that is forgotten then shows up in the most unexpected way? According to Elizabeth Thomason, "'Tonight I Can Write' marks what has often been described as a 'shipwreck' in the couple's relationship.

The entire poem is deeply felt elegy for lost love" (Thomason). She describes Neruda's poem about a man who has a difficult time in moving on:

The poem begins by repeating the title and adding the characterization 'the saddest lines'. This suggests a meditative creative place in which the poet can channel his painful resignation into verse…. The romance is destroyed utterly and the speaker seems to be both isolated from and taunted by the natural world. (Thomason)

She defines the speaker of the poem as a man who is only left with memories of his lover: "The speaker is left with the surging memory of his lover in a deep lament expressed in terms of coastal, sea imagery. Great anguish is expressed for the woman he has lost" (Thomason). She states that the speaker grieves for what was once his and now is left with...