A Nocturnal upon st. Lucy's Day, Being the Shortest Day

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  • A nocturnal upon st. Lucy's Day, being the shortest day
    • stanza 1 -  starts by setting the scene of darkness/misery contrast between normal association with light
      • "'Tis the the year's midnight"
        • opens to darkness/sadness
          • takes a day of celebration and fills it with darkness
        • winter solstice is the shortest night of the year - 12th of Dec. Patron st of the blind. reported to be the day Anne died
      • "the sun is spent, and now his flasks/ Send forth light squibs, no constant rays:"
        • broken light - even the sun is floundering  beaten. general, extended beyond his own experience
          • "The world's whole sap is sunk;"
            • life is gone.
              • "whither, as to the bed's feet"
                • winter solstice is the shortest night of the year - 12th of Dec. Patron st of the blind. reported to be the day Anne died
                • believed that a dead's person's soul disappeared to the end of the bed when they died
          • "yet all these seem to laugh/ Compared with me, who am their epitaph"
            • life is gone.
              • "whither, as to the bed's feet"
                • believed that a dead's person's soul disappeared to the end of the bed when they died
            • the whole world is facing death, and darkness, everything appears bleak in comparrissonto former life, but what he is feeling is worse than this.
      • shrinking stresses (7, 5, 4, 4, 3). first stanza is one sentence. ABBACCCDD - gives heavy lumbering feeling in the centre
    • stanza 2 - I am an example of what the end of love looks like
      • "study me then"
        • aggressive, petulant. His feeling will be universal
        • complete comparisson to the individualised joy of: The Good Morrow, The Sun Rising, A Valediction Forbidding Mourning
        • "'Twere a profanation of our joys/ to tell the laity of our love"
          • complete comparisson to the individualised joy of: The Good Morrow, The Sun Rising, A Valediction Forbidding Mourning
      • "I am every dead thing,/ In whom love wrought new alchemy."
        • Love is a God, the Sun is a good. removal from Christianity
          • The Good Morrow " What ever dies was not mixed equally"
          • "a quintessenceof nothingness,/ From dull privations, and lean emptiness"
            • even alchemy has become changed and ended. reversed, there is no love - no possibility for new things
            • The Expiration: "this last lamenting kiss,/ Which sucks two souls, and vapours both away"
            • "I am re-begot/ Of absence, darkness, death, things which are not"
          • "I am re-begot/ Of absence, darkness, death, things which are not"
      • Stanza 3 - continued focus on nothingness and comparison to others
        • "All others, from all things, draw all that's good,/ Life, soul, form, spirit"
        • "i, by love's limbeck, am the grave/ of all that's nothing"
          • he has been made into more than nothingness, he is the container of the death of nothingness. there is no salvation - movement beyond this pain
        • " we two wept, and so/ Drowned the whole world...oft we did grow to be two chaoses...absences withdrew our souls and made us carcasses"
          • can no longer use stock petrarchan love imagery
          • God created the world from chaos. again idea of ends and beginnings
          • we were so united. one of the same. The Expiration
      • Stanza 4 clearly refers to the change the brought this. Continues to lament at his nothingness
        • "I am by her death"
        • "the first nothing"
          • God created the world from chaos. again idea of ends and beginnings
        • "If I were any beast,/ Some ends, some means; yea plants/ yea stones, detest"
          • Donne used to preach about how everything was made of something, great chain of being reversed.
        • even a shadow requires "a light and body"
      • stanza 5 - conclusion. returns to other lovers, warns them
        • "I am none, nor will my sun renew"
          • starts by reminding us there is no hope
        • "the lesser sun/ At this time the Goat is run"
          • everyday love and lust
          • Capricorn begins at the solstice. goat was associated with lust. new cycle, innevitability of life which he is now separate from.
          • the "lesser sun" is believed to either refer to a lesser beloved. or could be seen as a lesser love, a lesser experience
        • "enjoy your summer all: As she enjoys her long night's festival,"
          • St Lucy is removed from her usual positive associations
            • "this hour her vigil, and her eve"
              • night before a body departs. it is her end and her beginning also.
              • "both the year's and the day's deep midnight"
                • takes a day of celebration and fills it with darkness
            • rest

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