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Transcript of The Kiss
By a whisper of love,
Spellbound to a word
Does Time cease to move,
Till her calm grey eye
Expands to a sky
And the clouds of her hair
Like storms go by?
Then the lips that you have kissed
Turn to frost and fire,
And a white-steaming mist
So back to their birth
Fade water, air, earth,
And the First Power moves
Over void and dearth.
Is that Love? no, but Death,
A passion, a shout,
The deep in-breath,
The breath roaring out,
And once that is flown,
You must lie alone,
Without hope, without life,
Poor flesh, sad bone. Biblical Allusion Syntax Rhetorical Question By Robert Graves Lust Betrayal Shift From Rhyme Scheme The rhyme scheme is mostly ABAB through out the poem. Example: Stirred-Word Love-Move A B Personification- The poet utilizes personification to help descried the feeling of the poem to the audience. Example: "Does Time cease to move" Diction The diction used in the poem helps the poet portray a certain image and tone. Tone The word choice that the Graves utilizes creates a very cynical tone. The words such as spellbound and obscures and dearth has a denotative meaning where Graves uses it to his advantage to portray that an innocent "kiss" may lead a person to depression. Hyperbole Imagery The word-choice/ diction also helps emphasize the imagery that the poet portrays through out the poem using colorful vocabulary and interesting metaphors. Example: "Till her calm grey eye/ expands to the sky" Metaphors The poet's use of metaphors helps establish a certain image to the poem to help the audience to understand the emotions going on through the poem Example: "And the clouds of her hair /Like storms go by? Fire vs Ice Hyperbole Hyperbole in the poem gives room for the poet to connect to the audience by creating an image. Example: "Then the lips you have kissed/ Turn to frost and fire" Archetype situations Fire and ice is an archetypes situation where it contrasts passion and avoidance. The poet uses this theme to help emphasize the importance of the kiss and its meaning. Example: "Turn to frost and fire/ And a white steaming mist/ obscures desire" Biblical Illusion The poet uses biblical illusion to help emphasize how the feeling of love has been around for so long but many mistaken it for lust. Example: "And the First Power moves/ Over void and dearth" Syntax Near the end of the poem, the poet does not use complete sentences to help portray the devastation of the situation, being betrayed by the one you love, and it helps the audience connect to the "victim " of the situation. Example: "Without hope, without life/ Poor flesh, sad bone" Denotation/connotation Denotation/ Connotation The poet utilizes denotation/ connotation to help emphasize the shift in the poem. It shows how the "victim" believed in the narrator, but was given lies and pain instead. Example: "Is that Love? no, but Death" Contrast between Lust and Betrayal The point of contrast happens after the line "Obscured desire". That is the point because of the transitional word, so, and also because of the tone shift. After that line the tone has become more solemn and grim, to help portray the betrayal that is about to come. Universal Idea Do not confuse Love and Lust with each other Meaning The poet, Graves, is telling the readers to not confuse Love and Lust with each other because it can only lead to heartbreak and loneliness. He uses many different style devices to help portray the pain that comes from being taken advantage of. Question 1: How does the title The Kiss significant to the meaning of the poem? How does that tie back into the universal idea? The title of The Kiss is significant to the meaning of the poem, by manipulating a physical mean that is a good thing into a memory of pain. The overall theme of the poem is a relationship or the stages of a relationship. The poet, Graves, in the second stanza, mentions the ecstasy of the kiss, “Turn[ing] frost to fire”. In this line, readers can feel the passion of the kiss and how it fuels the emotions of the person the narrator is talking to. This ties back into the universal idea by how the person to the narrator is talking to is confusing the passion of lust into love. Such as, “Are you shaken, are you stirred/ by a whisper of love?” Showing the audience that the narrator does not truly love the person he is talking to, but rather he lusts after her. Proving that the confusion between the two will lead to heartbreak. Question 2: How does the poet use an inanimate object to portray a physical mean? The inanimate object/ feeling of love was portrayed by a kiss. The passionate kiss was describe as “Turn to frost and fire/ a white-steaming mist/ obscures desire”. This shows the passion of the kiss that fueled the girl/ person that the narrator talks to, to fall in love with the narrator. This leads to the physical mean of death. Or it connects to a metaphoric death of the girl’s soul. The poet uses the connection of the kiss to link to the death. Showing that an innocent kiss with raging emotions may cause an undesirable effect. Proving that the poet is cautioning girls/ women to not allow themselves to be taken advantage of. Question 3: How can one tie the meaning of this poem to a life lesson? Does it discourage or encourage people to follow their hearts? Does it discourage or encourage people to follow their brain? A person can tie the meaning of the poem to a life lesson by not confusing love and lust with each other. By not allowing room for misinterpretation with the other person. The meaning of the poem is to caution people to not be moved by the slightest bit of lust with love and creating a situation where one can be hurt. The poet Graves tries to connect lust with a denote of death to unconsciously warn the audience to stay away from lust. This poem discourages people to follow their heart but encourages them to follow their brain. The poem emphasizes the audience to not make a fool of themselves in terms of love. To think clearly about one’s feelings before acting upon impulsive moves.