can you help me in the explanation for Edward Dowden's poem First Love ?
thank you in advance ^^
My long first year of perfect love,
My deep new dream of joy; She was a little chubby girl,
I was a chubby boy.
I wore a crimson frock, white drawers,
A belt, a crown was on it;
She wore some angel's kind of dress
And such a tiny bonnet,
Old-fashioned, but the soft brown hair Would never keep its place;
A little maid with violet eyes,
And sunshine in her face.
O my child-queen, in those lost days
How sweet was daily living!
How humble and how proud I grew,
How rich by merely giving!
She went to school, the parlour-maid
Slow stepping to her trot;
That parlour-maid, ah, did she feel
How lofty was her lot!
Across the road I saw her lift
My Queen, and with a sigh
I envied Raleigh; my new coat
Was hung a peg too high.
A hoard of never-given gifts
I cherished, priceless pelf;
'Twas two whole days ere I devoured
That peppermint myself.
In Church I only prayed for her
'O God bless Lucy Hill;'
Child, may His angels keep their arms
Ever around you still.
But when the hymn came round, with heart
That feared some heart's surprising
Its secret sweet, I climbed the seat
'Mid rustling and uprising;
And there against her mother's arm
The sleeping child was leaning,
While far away the hymn went on,
The music and the meaning.
Oh I loved with more of pain
Since then, with more of passion,
Loved with the aching in my love
After our grown-up fashion;
Yet could I almost be content
To lose here at your feet
A year or two, you murmuring elm,
To dream a dream so sweet.
2 Answers | Add Yours
Sixth stanza :
In this stanza , the poet is describing how happy and joyful he is . he likened himself to a person who has received millions of gifts . a person who is overwhelmed of what he saw . He can't even describe how much he is happy .
Seventh stanza :
In this stanza , he is telling us how he spent his times in church . He only pray for her 'O God bless Lucy Hill;'. His prays are so caring "may His angels keep their arms Ever around you still". He loves her so much . He called her "Child" .
Eighth and Ninth stanza :
In these lines the poet is telling us of a sad tragedy . Once he was in the church praying he heard a song that was surprising. A song that feared him so much that he couldn't complete his prying . he climbed the seat looking to the source of the song " Mid rustling and uprising". He saw his beloved girl in her mother's arms " The sleeping child was leaning" . she died . and that was her funeral . all the music went away or the poet couldn't hear it because of his shock .
Tenth stanza :
The poet is telling us about his deep pain because he lost his love . He never loved anyone as he loved her . His heart was burning inside because after these years of love she just passed away leaving him alone :
" Loved with the aching in my love || After our grown-up fashion; ".
Eleventh stanza :
In the final stanza , he is saying that after her , he never felt happy . he remembered her sweet words when she told him " To dream a dream so sweet."
From the title of the poem "First love" , It's obvious that the poet is talking about his first experience in love . The girl he loved was called Lucy Hill and that is clear through the poem itself . He described how she looked like and how he loved her . He couldn't forget her even after the passing of time , and he wrote the poem as a remembrance for her.
In these lines the poet is talking about " his first perfect love" . He is so happy and full of joy because he found the girl of his dreams. As he described her she was a chubby girl just like him. This indicate how he is so satisfied from her appearance .
Now the poet is describing himself , how he was wearing a red frock, white drawer and " A belt, a crown was on it". He described his beloved as well and what she was wearing too . She was wearing a beautiful dress and a lovely hat . these descriptions show the fashion of their period.
Third stanza :
The poet here is describing his beloved more closer , although she is looking " Old-fashioned" but her moving brown hair , her violet eyes and the shinning of her face makes her beautiful girl . He believes that she is so fair lady .
Fourth stanza :
In this stanza the poet is remembering the old happy times. How the happiness was easy to knock their doors . How the live was sweet that he grew humble and proud . He said that they were rich because of the blessings God gave them "rich by merely giving" .They weren't greed .
Fifth stanza :
Here the poet is expressing his feelings toward his beloved when he saw her going to school. He is calling her with beautiful nicknames that show how much he loves her : a queen & " parlour-maid " . He is envying the road because she is walking above it . He was so happy because he saw her , even his coat was flying too high.
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