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English 2027-Poetry Response Paper

English 2027-Poetry Response Paper - As the vine and what...

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Janie Ramírez July 9, 2008 Wine From the Vines, Will You Be Mine? In Robert Herrick’s seductive poem “The Vine”, many parallels can be made between the narrator, the narrator’s love, Lucia, and the vine of Bacchus. As the narrator transforms into a vine, the lady too is transformed from a virginal girl to a woman that has been touched and seen. The impression is given that she is still innocent when the poet calls her “dainty” (4) and by her shock “I with my tendrils did surprise” (6). She gains experience as the narrator slowly covers her body with himself as the vine and views her naked form. In his dream the narrator has become a vine that takes advantage of a girl. In the end though, he awakens to find that he is just a man with a pressing need and the lady he was enjoying in his sleep is still safe from his “hardened stem”. Just as Bacchus intoxicates with his wine and his power to throw a good party, the narrator slowly intoxicates his lover.
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Unformatted text preview: As the vine, and what it produces, ravishes Bacchus and his subjects, the narrator, as a vine, ravishes his once civilized lady, “So that my Lucia seemed to me, Young Bacchus ravished by his tree” (12, 13). Slowly throughout the poem, the vined narrator entrances his lover by twining his leafy extremities around her. The Maenads, female followers of Bacchus, were also once upstanding ladies. Once they came under the spell of Bacchus, they lost all their senses and engaged in drunkenness, crazy sex acts, and dancing. Both the vines of Bacchus and the vine of the narrator are sources that can lead to immense pleasure as well as peril. They both have the power to seduce and to imprison. Merrymaking can be derived from drunkenness, but ill things can also evolve out of too much of this. The vine of the narrator can bring about once unknown exciting things for Lucia, but at the possible cost of her reputation...
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