A Valediction Forbidding Mourning

  • Plot: “A Valediction Forbidding Mourning” is a metaphysical poem that seeks to illustrate the deep and profound love between the speaker and their beloved, which transcends physical separation.
  • Structure & Language Techniques: The poem, with its tightly structured rhyme scheme and frequent use of metaphysical conceits, showcases Donne’s ability to perfectly balance logical argument and vivid imagery in order to convey his ideas.
  • Themes & Linking Poems: The themes of love, distance, connection, and spirituality resonate in this work, and they link to Donne’s other poems such as “The Sun Rising” and “The Good-Morrow,” which similarly explore the transcendent nature of love.
  • Key Quotes: Key quotes like “Our two souls therefore, which are one” and “Thy firmness makes my circle just” exemplify the poem’s metaphorical comparisons of love to earthly and cosmic phenomena, and affirm the transcendent connection between the lovers.
  • Poet & Context: John Donne, a prominent figure in the Metaphysical poetry movement during the 17th century, wrote many of his most poignant love poems during his early, carefree years before he became an Anglican cleric, including “A Valediction Forbidding Mourning.”