Derek Walcott Love After Love Analysis

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Through a discussion of literary devices, compare the themes and moods in Walcott 's ‘Love After Love’ and Shakespeare 's ‘Sonnet 18’. Many poems talk about love or express love as the theme; love is a common theme in poems because it is an important part of life that everyone has to go through. In the two poems to be discussed, although they have the same theme i.e. love, Walcott’s poem is concerned with self-love while Shakespeare’s sonnet is concerned with a different type of love i.e. romantic love. However, ‘Love After Love’ by Derek Walcott and ‘Sonnet 18’ by William Shakespeare both share the same theme and use similar literary devices to create different moods and themes in their poetry to convey their own type of love.

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This is a modern view of love compared to the perceptions of it in the sixteenth century. Whereas, in ‘Sonnet 18,’ the language is lyrical and classically poetic, the language here is disjointed, does not rhyme or even want to rhyme. The narrator in Walcott’s poem is only addressing himself so the language doesn’t have to follow a pattern to be understood by another as in Shakespeare’s poem. The contrasting structure of both poems reflects the different times that they are written. The poet addresses the reader using sharp, straight directives (“Sit.” “Eat.”); this captures a harsh tone and mood. These words make the reader feel compelled to action. In Shakespeare’s sonnet the tone and mood is very different. The word choices are chosen carefully and meaningful to show the simplicity and loveliness of its admire of the beloved has guaranteed eternally and always. The poem starts with a question addressed to the beloved: “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” meaning the lover is compared to the summer’s day and this season doesn’t happen often in
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