Please can you discuss the phrasing in "The Witch" by Mary E Coleridge?  Thank you.

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literaturenerd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Coleridge's poem "The Witch", the first two stanzas are written in first person. Here, the speaker is discussing the challenges faced as walking the earth.

In the third stanza, the narration changes. At the beginning of the third stanza, the woman opening the door for the wanderer is speaking. Later in the stanza, the narration changes to first person again. This could denote that the two women have become one.

While the poem has been referenced as a quasi-tribute to Coleridge's great-great uncle, Samuel Coleridge, it also shows the power that the narrator(s) have as women in living in harsh conditions.

Another point where the phrasing of the poem mix are the speakings regarding the threshold. By both women mentioning the threshold, it shows that the threshold holds importance for each. In the end, neither will see a threshold again given both have changed.