Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Bridegroom

Kipling's epitaph "The Bridegroom" stood out to me due to its thematic connection to some of the previous poems we have read this semester like "Alonzo the Brave" and "Lenora." Whereas we have seen authors describe marriage as a type of death or leading to the grave, in this epitaph Kipling portrays Death itself as a lover that steals the bridegroom from his bride. I especially liked how the poem portrays the narrator apologizing for his unfaithfulness, and asking her to not call him false. He is almost trying to justify to her the reason why he abandoned her with rational, structured arguments about the situation, talking about how Death had a legitimate claim to him before his true bride showed up. This poem offers a powerful image of death as the "ancient bride" who has legitimate claim to the groom- even to steal him from the arms of his beloved.

The last stanza from this poem made me shiver. Reading it, I felt like the poet was saying that the bridegroom expected to endure eternity with his new bride- death.

No comments:

Post a Comment