Robert Herrick (1591-1674)
Delight in Disorder
Robert Herrick’s Delight in Disorder is one of his fourteen hundred poems published in 1648. Throughout the short, 14-line, lyric poem Herrick demonstrates the speaker’s fondness of observing disorder, especially if there is involvement with the female being; in extension to this, he seems to be presenting a great internal struggle within the speaker about his way of admiring a women, conveying conflicting emotions through his words.
Delight in Disorder is considered a lyric poem; it is a shorter poem that is not so much of a narrative, but instead has the identity of being a thought that is battling amidst two different responses to the speaker’s situation. It emphasizes emotion, and feeling about an event, which he describes with words that entail beauty, and also words that entail turmoil. Herrick organized this poem into seven couplets, allowing it to come together quite neatly. The 14 lines provide an equal number of syllables for each, making for good rhythm throughout. What should also be noticed about the poem is that it’s words give implications of the speaker as it displays a kind of “sweet disorder” concerning the couplets. In Herrick’s first line “A sweet disorder in the dress” acts as an indication that the body (the ‘dress’) of them poem, will itself be in a kind of disarray, as well as referring more explicitly to the dress of a female individual. To follow through with this indication of disorder, lines one and two rhyme quite easily when read, along with lines 9 and 10, and the ending lines 13 and 14 as well. However, The other four couplets force the reader to slightly alter the pronunciation of the ending word in order to get a good rhyme out of the couplet; for example: “thrown” and “distraction” in lines three and four. Furthermore, The lyric “I” is used once in line 12, which gives the reader the feeling of a concluding thought, however, this thought of “wild civility” is somewhat...
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