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Comparative Essay Between Firstlove And Sex Without Love

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First Love John Clare and Sex Without Love , two poems written at different times, with "connected" themes but at the same time very different. First Love is a Lyrical poem written in the 18th century by John Clare and Sex Without Love is a more contemporary poem which was written in 1985 by Sharon Olds. The theme in First Love is about a person that fell in love for the first time, who is talking about his emotions and what happened to him when it happened, while Sex Without Love the persona is criticizing the people that can have sex without being in love.

In these two poems, which are self-explained by the titles (First Love and Sex Without Love), we can see that they are almost opposite poems. In the poem First Love, the persona is talking about how he felt and what happened to him when he fell in love for the first time. The theme in this poem is more warmer and more innocent, the persona talks about his most personal feelings from when he fell in love, and this makes the theme more emotional. The persona starts by saying "I ne'er was struck before that hour with love so sudden and so sweet", meaning that he had never fell in love, a very profound and good feeling, before that moment and then describes how it was that he felt through the rest of the poem. While in Sex Without Love the persona is criticizing the people that can have sex without loving each other and asks herself how can they do it. This theme is about something a lot more superficial and cold, even the author compares people who can have sex without love with ice-skaters, which gives us an image of coldness, but this does not mean that this poem is less profound because even though the theme is superficial and cold, the author describes it in a very detailed and profound way through metaphors and similes. In this poem the author leaves all the feelings and emotions behind, and talks about how superficial and cold are the people that can "...make love without love."(l.1) In this poem the persona starts by saying "How do they do it, the ones who make love without love?" from which we can infer that it is not the first time that they do this act of coldness and selfishness. We can see a big contrast between these two poems, In First Love the persona talks about that he is in love, an emotion beyond the physical, while in Sex Without Love, what the persona talks about something purely physical and superficial. This shows how different these two poems are in terms of theme, as something warm and something cold, they are almost opposite, even though they do have things in common, like being profound.

If we compare these two poems in terms of the use of symbolism, as in the use of similes and metaphors, we can see that in this aspect these two poems are very similar, both have many similes and some metaphors, one more than the other. Both poems have a simile at the beginning of them, "Her face it bloomed like as sweet flower" in the third verse from First Love and "Beautiful as dancers, gliding over each other like ice-skaters over the ice" from Sex Without Love, though there is a difference, the one comparing the people having "sex without love" with ice-skaters is closer to the main theme than the simile from First Love, that is a comparison between the woman who the persona fell in love with, though this one is not too that less closer to the main theme of the poem. We can also see that in the poem Sex Without Love, the similes and metaphors are much more longer than in First Love. Most verses of Sex Without Love have a simile or a metaphor and most of them are connected with each other like from the second verse



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