John Donne as an Innovative Poet

1012 Words May 2nd, 2013 5 Pages
John Donne 's position as a revered and respected poet is not unjustified. The depth and breath of literary works written about him along with the esteemed position he held among his comtemporaries is evidence of his popularity. As a metaohysical poet his poetry was frequently abstract and theoritical and he utilised poetry to display his learning and above all his wit. He was most certainly an innovative love poet who moved away from the Shakespearian focus on form intensely literary style. He was an expert in argument and often used exr=tended conceits to put forward these arguments. The drama in his poetry and his use of language all serve to highlight his skills as an innovative and creative poet. In order to examine Donne 's …show more content…
He uses the unfeeling language of philosophy and science to advance his arguments.

Intellectual argument and attempts to persuade are a frequent feature of Donne 's poetry. Many of them are exercises in the use and abuse of logic. His poem The Flea contains twenty seven lines of witty closely-knit argument on the significance for two lovers of a flea bite. The poem contains three connecteded arguments; the first it that the flea, who has bitten both the speaker and his lover, now contains the blood of each and so they are mingled withing the body of the flea in which they have effectively made their marriage bed. The second is that by killing the flea, she will be committing murder (killing him), suicide (killing herself) and sacrilege (destroying the 'temple ' which was their marriage bed). The final segment of the argument takes place after his lover has killed the flea. The speaker reasons that as neither he nor she has suffered from the death of the flea, if she yields to him, she will lose no more honour than when 'this flea 's death took life from her '. [Donne line 27]. Donne pursues his argument in a reasoned logical fashion and in this poem in particular the argument carries an irreverent tone and through its ludicrousness and wit Donne demonstrates both his intellect and ingenuity.

Another of Donne 's poem which employs a reasoned argument is Valediction: Forbidding Mourning. Unlike the

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