Light Poems - Poems For Light

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A Light Woman - Poem by Robert Browning


So far as our story approaches the end,
Which do you pity the most of us three?---
My friend, or the mistress of my friend
With her wanton eyes, or me?


My friend was already too good to lose,
And seemed in the way of improvement yet,
When she crossed his path with her hunting-noose
And over him drew her net.


When I saw him tangled in her toils,
A shame, said I, if she adds just him
To her nine-and-ninety other spoils,
The hundredth for a whim!


And before my friend be wholly hers,
How easy to prove to him, I said,
An eagle's the game her pride prefers,
Though she snaps at a wren instead!


So, I gave her eyes my own eyes to take,
My hand sought hers as in earnest need,
And round she turned for my noble sake,
And gave me herself indeed.


The eagle am I, with my fame in the world,
The wren is he, with his maiden face.
---You look away and your lip is curled?
Patience, a moment's space!


For see, my friend goes shaling and white;
He eyes me as the basilisk:
I have turned, it appears, his day to night,
Eclipsing his sun's disk.


And I did it, he thinks, as a very thief:
``Though I love her---that, he comprehends---
``One should master one's passions, (love, in chief)
``And be loyal to one's friends!''


And she,---she lies in my hand as tame
As a pear late basking over a wall;
Just a touch to try and off it came;
'Tis mine,---can I let it fall?


With no mind to eat it, that's the worst!
Were it thrown in the road, would the case assist?
'Twas quenching a dozen blue-flies' thirst
When I gave its stalk a twist.


And I,---what I seem to my friend, you see:
What I soon shall seem to his love, you guess:
What I seem to myself, do you ask of me?
No hero, I confess.


'Tis an awkward thing to play with souls,
And matter enough to save one's own:
Yet think of my friend, and the burning coals
He played with for bits of stone!


One likes to show the truth for the truth;
That the woman was light is very true:
But suppose she says,---Never mind that youth!
What wrong have I done to you?


Well, any how, here the story stays,
So far at least as I understand;
And, Robert Browning, you writer of plays,
Here's a subject made to your hand!

Comments about A Light Woman by Robert Browning

  • Gold Star - 10,277 Points Herbert Guitang (4/26/2014 7:17:00 PM)

    A poem of perfection and beauty (Report) Reply

    4 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Rookie Emily Tong (9/14/2013 2:58:00 AM)

    Here is my take on this poem: (probably not perfect, still in the midst of studying literature at A levels)
    Basically this is a poem about Browning's friend, and how he has been captivated by a certain lady. However, it is suggested to us that this lady has no intentions of truly loving his friend and perhaps has other ulterior motives, can can be inferred from the animal imagery that surrounds her 'An eagle's the game her pride prefers, though she snaps at a wren instead', which suggests to us that perhaps she's in for some material gains, though she is unable to see that Browning's friend is perhaps not a suitable candidate for this. Also can be seen from the allusions to traps and nets and how his friend is 'tangled in her toils'. As such, in the end, with Browning able to see through her, he has decided to spare his friend the misery of marrying this woman and instead diverted her attention onto himself and married her instead. While this is indeed a noble act, it is not recognized by his friend, who views it as Browning having stolen the girl of his dreams, or in this case, his 'light lady'. To the friend, this lady was almost sort of a holy figure to him and he almost seemed to worship her, as the word 'light' does hold such connotations. Moreover, we are told that his friend's 'day was turned to night' and that his 'sun's disc has elipsed', giving us an indication as to how she was almost sort of a light source for him. His friend then holds much grudges and hatred towards browning, as can be seen through the phrase 'he eyes me as the basilisk', a mythical creature that had the power to kill just by its gaze, which suggests very strong negative feelings that the friend holds against browning. At the end of the poem, we are given a sense that perhaps Browning should not have proceeded with such an action because it has obviously been misinterpreted by his friend and it has caused more harm to his friend now that he has to deal not just with the loss of love, but also the loss of friendship. (Report) Reply

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Poems About Light

  1. 1. A Light Woman , Robert Browning
  2. 2. A Light Exists In Spring , Emily Dickinson
  3. 3. It's Like The Light, -- , Emily Dickinson
  4. 4. Jeanie With The Light Brown Hair , Stephen C. Foster
  5. 5. Sudden Light , Dante Gabriel Rossetti
  6. 6. Light As The Linnet On My Way I Start , Robert Louis Stevenson
  7. 7. Life Is The Body's Light , Robert Herrick
  8. 8. God's Light-Houses , Helen Hunt Jackson
  9. 9. They Are All Gone Into The World Of Light , Henry Vaughan
  10. 10. Prais'D Be Diana's Fair And Harmless Light , Walter. Ralegh
  11. 11. Light Of Stars, The , Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  12. 12. Star Light River , Alma Jean Epps
  13. 13. Evils Of The Light , Barbara Langford
  14. 14. The Light , Bernadette Maria Thompson
  15. 15. The First Light , Bruce Horaz
  16. 16. I'Ll Light Another Candle , Charles R. McCarthy
  17. 17. Half Of A Light , Clint Gray
  18. 18. Light Of My Life , Crystal L. Miller
  19. 19. Angel Of Light , Debra W. Shuler
  20. 20. I See The Light Of Life , Diana Kierce
  21. 21. Reflective Of 1,000 Points Of Light , Doc Damon Ray Hollingsworth
  22. 22. Gifts Of Light - I , M. Elizabeth Barrett Doyle
  23. 23. My Burden Is Light , Esther Ferrell Seadeek
  24. 24. A Light Shining In Darkness , Eunice B. Gardner
  25. 25. Written In A Steady Light , Fini Lokke
  26. 26. The Little Light Bulb , Frankie Richardson
  27. 27. The Sanctity Of The Inner Light , Frederick Thomas Burke
  28. 28. My Father's Flash Of Light , George Lewis Walker
  29. 29. Where The Light Shines On Forever , Grace M. Stuffle
  30. 30. The Eye Of Light , Harumi Taniguchi
  31. 31. Labels And Light , Jean Miles
  32. 32. Through Dark And Light And Changing Mists , Jerra D. James
  33. 33. The Valley Of Light , Joseph Milnes
  34. 34. We Wish You Light Snows, And Twinkling L.. , Karl Vollmer
  35. 35. Dance Unto The Light , Katrina S. Lucas
  36. 36. Light , Lance Larsen
  37. 37. The Smallest Light , Madelyn Yanchyshyn
  38. 38. Life's Wintry Light , Marcetta Hospelhorn
  39. 39. In The Star Blue Moon-Light , Marie Lembo
  40. 40. My Friend, The Light , Mark Daley
  41. 41. Veiled Light , Mary Stampone
  42. 42. Guiding Light , Mike Moon
  43. 43. The Festival Of Light , Doreen Dower
  44. 44. The Light , Patricia McAteer
  45. 45. Light , Robyn Runyan
  46. 46. Embracing The Light , Rose Ann Haeussler
  47. 47. Spirit Of Light , Yolanda A. Seibert
  48. 48. Skin Of Light , Rene Daumal
  49. 49. The Last Of The Light Brigade , Rudyard Kipling
  50. 50. The Light O' The Moon , Vachel Lindsay
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