E. E. Cummings’s poem “since feeling is first” centers around a speaker who is attempting to persuade a potential lover to ignore her “wisdom” and the expected order of courting.
In much (if not most) of his poetry, Cummings plays with language, particularly capitalization and grammar. He does this effectively here. Cummings does this by comparing romance to language, particularly grammar and syntax. This is evident in the first stanza when the speaker says, “who pays any attention / to the syntax of things.”
One of the most effective comparisons between romance and language occurs in the final two lines of the poem in which the speaker attempts to tell the potential lover that life is too short (“death i think is no parenthesis”) to attempt to order it like “a paragraph” and not give in to their passion.