Posted On March 29, 2017
The poem ???Porphyria??™s Lover??™ written by Robert Browning is a dramatic monologue with the main themes of sex, madness, insanity, murder and obsession. These themes are also portrayed through Bowning??™s use of poetic devices.
In the first four lines of the poem Browning opens with a dramatically gloomy atmosphere by using the technique of pathetic fallacy which attributes to the weather??™s human qualities by using the words ???sullen??? and ???awake??? to describe the wind. The threatening, uncontrolled and dark characteristics of the storm mirror the persona??™s madness, who with hindsight recounts events prior to Porphyrias death, generated by him; he is simply colouring the outside environment with his own internal emotions.
In the poem the use of a verb, ???glided??? and a pause indicated by a semi colon used in the line ???when glided in Porphyria; straight??? gives the poem a break in the rhythm. The speaker??™s obsessions immediately are focused on the object, being Porphyria??™s body which readers can quickly relate to its connection to the theme of sex. In the same line the break in rhythm and the nature of the storm are in contrast with each other and there is also a moment of normality in the mind of her murderer which the readers retrospectively understand.
Browning, in line ???she shut the cold out??? employs simple language which is used to transform the speakers mind from frenzied to peaceful which gives the reader an insight to the disturbed mind of the persona.
The lack of emotion and premeditation of the murder is evident in the line ???in one long yellow string I wound, three times her little throat around??? when the persona describes the very specific number of turns he makes in the hair to strangle Porphyria which evokes his murderess nature.
Browning also uses the technique of irony which can be seen in the line ???the smiling little rosy head, so glad it has its upmost will???. This shows that the persona does not recognise that he has committed a monstrous deed but instead perceives that he has made Porphyria happy, believing she wanted to die in order to be with him forever.
The poem ???Porphyria??™s lover??™ has the main ideas of murder, madness, sex and insanity and obsession. This has been achieved by the use of Browning??™s Poetic devices which enable the audience the engage with the persona??™s madness and realise his true emotional state.