to seize the day or not

Essay by karohariCollege, UndergraduateB+, June 2014

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Hapner � PAGE �1�

2 June 2014


Should people live for today or for tomorrow? To live for today is to follow the idea of Carpe Diem, or Seize the Day. Many people believe in this idea and follow it and do not worry about tomorrow. "To His Coy Mistress" is a poem that exemplifies Carpe Diem. Marvell uses this theme of Carpe Diem to try to convince his mistress to be with him now and not wait for a future time. He wants her to quit being coy and give in to her desires, which in turns lets him satisfy his own. He actually presents coyness as being a crime since life is very short.

In the first part of the poem he beseeches his mistress to love while she is still beautiful and youthful, "Now therefore, while the youthful hue/Sits on the skin like morning

let us sport us while we may/And now like amorous birds of prey" (33-38). He raves about the hue of her skin in the morning to make her think about what she is in danger of losing some day. He emphasizes that time will run out and love will not wait forever. At this point Marvell picks op the pace so as to make a sense of urgency to his need. He turns to flattery and speaks of adoring her body for a long time and that he wants to spend the rest of time with her. He tells her to seize the day and give in to him, "Had we but world enough, and time/This coyness, Lady, were no crime" (1-2). He thinks her ways are prudish and wants her to change and live for the moment.

He tries to reassure his mistress that...