The Diction Of Love In A Love Song And Love's Philosophy

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Is love always a positive influence? The poems “A Love Song” by William Williams and “Love’s Philosophy” by Percy Shelley both discuss love. “A Love Song” is full of negative imagery, and suggests that love changes how one sees the world for the worse. In contrast the poem “Love’s Philosophy” uses positive diction and beautiful imagery to convey the idea that love is something to be desired by all. Both authors convey these themes using the literary devices of diction, imagery, and tone. Both Williams and Shelley use the literary device of diction to convey their theme. In “A Love Song”, Williams writes that “the stain of love / Is upon the world”, showing how after one falls in love, they can never see the world the same again, because to…show more content…
In “A Love Song”, the tone is melancholic, as even while the speaker is being enamored by the overwhelming presence of love, he can feel the world around him seeping away and being tainted yellow. Williams writes, “I am alone. / The weight of love / Has buoyed me up / Till my head / Knocks against the sky” (Williams 19-23). The use of the oxymoron created by a weight buoying something up creates a disconnected feeling as if the speaker has no control over what happens to them, as if even when surrounded by people they are utterly alone because the only ‘real’ thing left to them in the world is the object of their affection. This creates a melancholic tone, which is heavy-hearted but not quite sad or depressed, and connects to the theme that love distorts the rest of the world. The tone that Shelley creates in his poem “Love’s Philosophy” is entranced. He uses a considerable amount of religious phrases, such as “the winds of heaven mix forever / With a sweet emotion”, showing how the speaker is almost spellbound, both by the person they love, and the very idea of love itself (Shelley 3-4). This connects to Shelley’s theme of love being desirable to
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