Clorinda and Damon essay ENGL 3430.002 April 3

Clorinda and Damon essay ENGL 3430.002 April 3 - Erin Gray...

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Erin Gray Dr. Mitra ENGL 3430.002 Renaissance Pastoral “Clorinda and Damon” The poem “Clorinda and Damon”, set in iambic tetrameter, chronicles a pastoral conversation between two lovers. Interestingly, Andrew Marvell decides to reverse the gender roles of the lovers; the wooer, Clorinda, loves Damon, the coy shepherd. Contradicting the “carpe diem” seduction method by the male in Marvell's “To His Coy Mistress,” Clorinda is instead the one who sees the earth as an Eden of delights for her to enjoy; Damon seeks the deeper spiritual meaning found in nature. In the beginning of the poem, Clorinda urges Damon to escape his pastoral duties and join her in a grassy vale so she can adorn his temples with the flowers of spring. Perhaps she had predicted his skepticism, for she chose a “grassy scutcheon” (ln. 3) –a shielded hill- for the sheep to feast and remain by their shepherd’s side while she romances him “where Flora blazons all her pride” (ln. 4). Flora- the Roman goddess of flowers, springtime, and fertility- could represent Clorinda’s desire for Damon in the biological sense. She may fear her pending infertility and the loss of her youthful beauty; she may also sense the indifference from her lover upon nearing the end of their affair. As their
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