Sunday, 9 May 2021

How Do I Love Thee – Sonnet 43 By Elizabeth Barrett Browning

  1. In the first line of the poem, it shows that the speaker is in love. She pointed out that she really loves someone to the point that she doesn’t know anymore how she can express her emotions and feelings towards her beloved, that’s why she asks how do I love thee?
  1. While in the phrase let me count the ways, if we connect it to love, for her, love can be count or measured in a way she can do. She’s trying to count various ways to make her beloved feel her so much love, or maybe she’s trying to count or remembering again the memories that they’ve shared together and all the reasons why she fell in love to that someone. When you are in love, you find a lot of reasons especially good ones to deepen your love towards your beloved. A lot of reasons and things come up to your mind because it’s the only thing you see and think whenever you’re with him.)
  • (Based on lines 2-4 of the poem, I can conclude about the speaker’s love in the poem was addressed towards his husband, Robert Browning who’s the husband of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, the poem’s author. If we based it from her background, the author/speaker didn’t experience any romantic relationships aside from her husband so, basically it was addressed to her husband who she loves the most. About the speaker’s love, it seems that this kind of love became stronger as time passes by. She loves her husband intensely that she will still love him after she died. She tends to express her flowing emotions by telling us that she loves him with all her soul. She loves him husband till to the depth and breadth and height, which means her love for him is unreachable.)
  • (The speaker declares that he/she loves the person with “passion” based on line 9, because according to what I’ve read on the author’s background, the speaker or the author suffered oppression from her father and she experienced so much negativity in life as she grows up. She was stuck inside her father’s house doing nothing. And it seems that writing her own collection of poems serves as her aid to ease boredom and to hide herself from the world’s cruelty. Until, she met her new passion, Robert Browning trough her works. For me, writing is the speaker/author’s passion until she found the man that she could love for the rest of her life and became her new passion by loving him and creating new inspirations to do more literary works that shows how much she loves him.
  • (I could say that the speaker’s feelings had changed between the past and present by supporting this line,

“In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.

  I love thee with a love I seemed to lose”.

Back to her old days of life, she loved every person that surrounds her but she didn’t receive enough love that she wanted. She loved those persons with so much loved. But when she met her husband, she begins to love again, this love for her husband became her new strength to pursue life. The love that she seemed to lost has now returned. The bad feelings that she felt during those old days now changed completely because it turns into love that can heal her and serves now as her breath. A love that sustain her needs a woman.)

  • The speaker’s feelings changed between the present and the future by supporting this line:

“Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if and choose,

  I shall but have love the better after death.”

For me, for all of the good and bad memories that the speaker experienced as she lived her life, she still manages to be happy and feel love having her husband who loves her at her present life. That even though time will come that it will tear them apart still her loves to her husband will remain stronger and better. That even after she dies, she will continue to love him in her next life. Their own future shows their deep and undying love with God’s permission and grace. Her love for him is everlasting.

Image: Pexels

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