I realized today that I have avoided putting older poems here–Marvell, Shakespeare, Wordsworth, for example. I’ve selected contemporary poems not only to avoid poems that everyone probably read in high school, but also because they seem more accessible, more alive.
But today I felt like reading Andrew Marvell’s “To His Coy Mistress,” written in the 1650s. You’ll certainly recognize phrases from this poem, even if you didn’t read it in high school. They’ve made their way into daily speech. And though written in strict rhyme and meter, Marvell’s language and syntax (except for the occasional thou and thy and shouldst) seem almost as fresh as a contemporary poem.
To His Coy Mistress
Had we but world enough and time,
This coyness, Lady, were no crime. Continue reading “A slight departure”