A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning by John Donne

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What kind of language is used in the poem "A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning?" Is the language consonant with the figures of speech?

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The language used in this poem (i.e., the poet's word choices) are not standard diction—certainly different than the language that is conversational or neutral. Donne uses words like profanation and laity, trepidation and sublunary: hardly words that the average person used in 1611 or even today. The speaker's well-developed vocabulary makes sense in terms of the kinds of topics he discusses.

He argues that his soul and his wife's soul "are one" and do not split or splinter when he goes away but rather expand, "like gold to airy thinness beat"—which is a simile. He also states that, if their souls are separate, then "they are two so / as stiff twin compasses are two," which is another simile. In short, he says that his lover's soul is like the constant, fixed part that does not move from its position while his own soul "roam[s]" far (but eventually returns "home").

Her "firmness" makes his circle perfect, even possible, and allows him to be able to get back...

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