Write a critical analysis of Christina Walsh’s poem ‘A Woman to Her Lover’. Compare and contrast the poem with others you have studied in the unit. Christina Walsh, a female poet, wrote the poem ‘A woman to her lover’ as a free verse. A free verse is a poem with an irregular stanza length, no rhyme scheme and no syllabus count. Writing it as a free verse reflects her point which is women is can change their attitude towards men. She broke all the rules of poetry, this shows that women do not have to be weak towards men, it does not have to be the same as tradition, the man does not have to control the women, they can have equal love.
Stanza one in Christina Walsh’s poem suggests slavery. She uses the word ‘bond slave’, which means a slave that does something without saying anything. Christina Walsh uses an image of a war, ‘as conqueror to the vanquished’. As she is the defeated, then she is forced, which shows that they are enemies. She does not want to be possessed by any one, she refuses it, and ‘O Lover I refuse you!’ she also uses an exclamation mark that shows she is serious. Christina Walsh uses alliteration of the letter ‘b’ throughout the whole poem. This is called a labial plosive. ‘To bend…’, ‘bond slave…’ and ‘to bear’ are used in stanza one, this shows that she is angry and being very assertive. ‘To bear your children, wearing out my life’ uses caesura to balance the two ideas. She is saying that if she gives him children, it is equivalent to wearing out her life.
She tells him ‘O lover’ right after the caesura that makes the phrase very strong. It is emphasized. Stanza two in Christina Walsh’s poem suggests a very different idea. It shows that she does not want to be treated as an angel that never does any mistakes or to be worshiped as a goddess, no one is perfect and neither is she. ‘Go! – I am no doll to dress and sit for feeble worship’, this shows that she thinks it is pathetic to treats someone like they are perfect and that they are just there to pleaseyou.Throughout the stanza, Christina Walsh uses alliteration in the letter ‘w’, ‘wed…’, ‘word and wish’, ‘wingless…’ and ‘worship…’ This gives a soft sound that reflects how the man sees the women. She then uses the word ‘Go!’ to show that what she is saying is straightforward, which again shows that she is against being loved for her beauty and perfection. She then calls him a ‘fool’ and tells him again, ‘I refuse you’. This shows that she is convinced with her point and the repetition shows that she I against both points she has mentioned.
‘Sonnet CXXX’ by William Shakespeare can be linked with the second stanza of Christina Walsh’s poem. They both agree about the same idea. They both suggest that women should not be loved for her beauty. At the beginning of the sonnet, the reader starts to feel that Shakespeare hates the women. He says ‘My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun’, this shows that she is not good looking; she is not beautiful. However, he concludes that even though she is not beautiful he loves her more than any beautiful girl has ever beenloved.The poem is a sonnet.
This means it contains fourteen lines made up of three quatrains and a rhyming couplet at the end. Only in Shakespeare’s sonnets, the rhyming couplets conclude his point. It is also written in iambic pentameter. Shakespeare is against the idea of tradition and courtly love; he is against the idea that the man describes the women as if she is the most beautiful women on earth. He says that his love to his mistress is ‘rare’ even though he does not describe her as beautiful. Describing her as beautiful would be ‘false compare’.
The third stanza in ‘A Woman to Her Lover’ Christina Walsh is trying to show us that she will not be a sex object that satisfies her husband’s desires, and neither will any women of her time. She says ‘not for you the hand of any wakened woman of our time’. She uses the word ‘wakened’ to show that this concept is not for any woman, it is for any aware and educated woman that knows her rights. Christina Walsh repeats the word ‘Or’ in both stanza two and stanza three. This shows that she has a list of ideas that she will make her refuse a man.
She also uses the word ‘creature’. This shows that if she accepts the face that a man wants to marry her tofu fill his desires then that is not any better than animals. She says ‘women of our time’ to show that this way of a relationship is old-fashioned and no one will accept, as now it is not the same as the olddays.The poem ‘To his coy mistress’ shows a teenager that is trying to convince his girlfriend to have sex with him. The boy gives her a list of reasons why she should have sex with him now.