The Lady By Amy Lowell

665 Words3 Pages
In “The Lady,” Amy Lowell uses irony, symbolism, similes, and metaphors to convey the subjective nature of beauty. Lowell gives the reader a preconception of the poem’s meaning by entitling her poem, “a lady”- a word society associates with of youth, poise, and elegance. However, the speaker’s idealizes a prostitute as his perception of a “lady,” which is the antithesis of society’s characterization of a “lady.” The speaker’s desire to interact with such a promiscuous woman proves that that beauty is in the eye of the beholder regardless of the stereotypical labels set upon the morality of a woman. The speaker presents the woman in the first stanza of the poem in a sensual and loving (captivating) manner. While the poem deals with the speaker’s “love” for the lady, his first descriptions are of her physicality rather than her intellect and companionship, which implies that his supposed “love” may actually be infatuation. In the first line, the speaker reveals his attraction to the woman’s physicality and desirability; “beautiful and faded” conveys that the woman’s appearance as well as her reputation of being “used” fosters his interest in her. He proceeds to use a simile to describe the…show more content…
In a condescending tone, the speaker metaphorically compares his “vigor” to “a new minted penny,” accentuating his physical and financial control over her. Additionally, the image of him throwing the penny at her feet alludes to her occupation. The juxtaposition of “dust” and the penny’s “sparkle” illustrates the commonality and dirty associations society connects with her occupation for the promise of money. Moreover, the last line “that its sparkle may amuse you,” may also indicate the speaker’s assumption that a woman of her commonality must have an inner desire to be perceived as beautiful and desirable by others like the sparkle shining in the dust for

More about The Lady By Amy Lowell

Get Access