Bride Song Analysis

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Sydney Romo
Pd. 6

Bride Song:
A Gently Worded Death

“Too late for love, too late for joy, too late, too late!” (1). This is the opening line from the poem “Bride Song”, by Christina Rossetti. The poem is about a woman (“the bride”), who lived her life waiting for her love (“the groom”) to come for her. She died alone, never having loved another man, all that time waiting for him to return, however, he was too late, and returned only in time for her funeral. If you were dying, would you fight for your life? Death may be inevitable, but you do not have to accept it. You can still fight, you can hold on just a bit longer. In the poem, the “bride” never seemed to fight for her life, but rather accepted her death. It was as if she would rather die than live knowing the love of her life would never return to her. Three major poetic devices used in the poem were symbolism, repetition, and rhyme scheme. One example of symbolism in the poem is “Now these are poppies in her locks,/ White poppies she must wear” (25-26). The white poppies worn by the bride are a symbol of “pure death”, meaning when the bride died, she was pure of heart. The poppies could also symbolize “eternal sleep”, implying that rather than seeing death as ‘the end’, she (the author) saw it as rest, a sort of dreamless sleep, an escape from her lonesome life. There are several examples of repetition in the poem, the repetition of the word “crown” in stanzas four and six {“We think her white brows often ached/ Beneath her crown” (38-39) and also “Lo we who love weep not today/ But crown her royal head” (55-56)} show great admiration and respect for the bride. This is also shown by the metaphor in which the author refers to the bride as “The enchanted princess” (7). The rhyme scheme is carried out through each stanza; however it changes slightly in the second and sixth stanzas. The overall rhyming of the poem tends to give it the effect of a song, which ties in with the title “Bride...
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