Essay on A Declaration Of Life After Death

795 Words Dec 15th, 2014 4 Pages
A Declaration of Life After Death The exceptional poetry of John Donne has produced both delight and astonishment in readers for over four centuries. Having composed a vast number of metaphysical poems throughout his lifetime, Donne’s ultimate purpose in writing was to create a high level of engagement, astounding his readers through the pairing of numerous unlike topics and ideas. Holy Sonnet 10 (“Death, be not proud”) is no exception to this objective. In this poem, Donne pronounces Death’s complete and utter lack of authority and compares one’s passing to the harmless and non-permanent act of sleep. Here, the speaker maintains the promise of eternal life and, therefore, deems Death of no consequence. Similar to this message of Death’s absent power and finality, George Herbert’s poem “Death” suggests that of an everlasting existence—one that directly follows the dying of an individual’s body. While this idea of eternal life in “Death” creates an analogous union of especially opposing subjects, the poetry of Herbert relies more on his religious devotion than an ability to shock and beguile readers. Also highly regarded as a metaphysical poet, Herbert wrote poems that gracefully unite elements of contradictory meaning, all while incorporating his love and dedication to God and Christ. While there are indeed infinite facets of both likeness and dissimilarity belonging to these poets and their poems, John Donne’s “Death, be not proud” and George Herbert’s “Death” share a…

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