Monday, March 29, 2010

Clarity in Properiza Rossi

As I was researching Felicia Heman's life, I found it particularly interesting that her work was often assigned to schoolchildren. Her poem celebrates moments clarity and optimism, which would indeed be a valuable message for children to hear. Lines like
"The bright work grows beneath my hands, unfolding as a rose leaf after leaf, to beauty, line by line",

celebrate poetic talent and could be read as encouragment to succeed in spite of life's obstacles, which are, in the case of this poem, related to love. Unlike the gothics and romantics, Heman seems to rejoice in her poetic felecity and its ability to convey the pangs and joys of being in love. There is a great sense of agency and purposefullness in this poem that Wordsworth, Keats and Colerige lacked.

1 comment:

  1. I wonder how much of this has to do with her chosen genres of expression: many of her poems are historical, either written from the perspective of a historical figure (usually female) or descriptive of the life and actions of such a figure. Perhaps we can see her work as a reaction to gothic poems, which remove women's agency, and to the self-involvement of lyrics by Coleridge and Wordsworth. How do her poems compare to Tennyson?