Please discuss the poem "Anger Lay by Me" by Elizabeth Daryush.

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mitchrich4199 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

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The speaker in Elizabeth Daryush's poem "Anger Lay by Me" is a trapped woman. She is trapped by her "lord," but also by society's expectations of her. It seems that she has been writing and that her lord is not happy with that. He "stood by me all through the day,/ Struck from my hand the book, the pen;/ He said: ‘Hear first what I’ve to say,/ And sing, if you’ve the heart to, then.’" Writing by women was primarily frowned upon during most of Daryush's life and this would seem to be the case in the poem.

The end of the poem illustrates the second part of my conjecture - that she is trapped by society's expectations of her.

And can I cast him from my couch?
And can I lock him from my room?
Ah no, his honest words are such
That he’s my true-lord, and my doom.

Here, the speaker is rather submissive. She calls his words (which we can assume were about her writing or the song that she was singing) honest.  She calls him her "true-lord," which is an ironic pun on "true-love" and follows that with the idea that he is her "doom." In this case, she knows that she cannot lead the life that she wants to lead. She will have to lead the life that she is supposed to lead, under her "lord's" supervision and control.

 

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