English Essay Sample on Red, Red Rose


Red, red rose counts to be one of the greatest poetic works of Robert Burns. Born and raised in the times that Scotland was experiencing social and revolutionary changes, the societal impact on the life of the then growing generation impacted on Robert’s writings. Culture is naturally inserted in the context of the poem. It moulds the thoughts of the persona, language, and descriptive representation of a changing society. This poem presents love as the main theme. It shows aspects of romanticism between the speaker and his loved one. The dear referred to by the speaker in the poem must have been in a close relationship with the speaker as he is seen to explicitly describe that someone with all manner of flowering and sweets words. In fact, this could be a good reason for the speaker to compose the poem. It’s an expression of desire and satisfaction with one’s present in another’s life. This paper, hence, focuses on the structural elements of the poem, red, red rose.

The engulfed overall look of this poem literally tells of a love affair of the persona in the poem. The poem begins with an open simile, “O my Luve’s like a red, red rose”. The speaker does a direct comparison of his love for the lover to a red rose which has newly sprung in June, using the word “like”. This is a subjective comparison done by the poem that targets to create a stylistic caption in the poem. The simile used gives the person referred to a comparative identity and strength. The speaker furthers his simile comparison in lines three and four of Stanza one still. He makes a comparison of his love to a sweet melody sung in tunes.He implies that his love is so much inflow that it has adopted the lyrics of life to be song by everyone and everywhere. Literally, we can say that the love is like a song which is sung and played for the kindness and sweetness of its tenure in the society. However, one may question the position of love referred to by the speaker. Is it love that he has for a lady or it’s the lady being referred to as love? In other words, we can ask whether the love referred to in the poem is a noun or a verb. The answer can be partly identified by the pattern of repetition seen in stanza one of this poem. They are instances of elements of repeat in the lines of stanza one such as a metrical pattern, tetrameter and a trimester in that order. All these repeat scheme patterns in the whole stanza make up a rhyme scheme. Moreover, in situations of combined use of repeated meters and rhyme scheme, it forms what is referred to as ballad meter as it is the poem.

Stanza two of the poem depicts the poet in attempt to quantify some of his sentiments to state how much serious he means his words and intention. So is the case when the speaker says, in lines one and two of stanza two, “As far art thou, my bonnie lass, so deep in love am I.” he means to say that his being deeply in love as a bonnie lass is quite fair. The word fair is used in the line to mean pretty good, beautiful or rather something that is attractive. This is a fancy way of saying something that is notall that fancy. It is a rather an irony set by the poet. It’s quite impossible to love someone pretty to the same level of her prettiness, leave alone the concept of matching and comparing love to prettiness. He again claims in line three and four of stanza two that he would love his dear until the sea dry up. This is a typical illusion element used in the poem.

Third stanza of the poem furthers implication of use of repetition in content of the poem. This is coupled with incitation of cultural context in showing the wave of the loving society that Robert lived in. He also uses metaphor in lines three and four of the stanza when the persona claims to be measuring time with sand. Above all, the context of him feeling loved and love in him feels him and the partner is a personification of the feeling love. Love is not human but giving it the characteristics of feeling something, is more of a human nature. This is personification applied in the context.

In stanza four, the speaker gets a moment to send off his love. He say “And fare thee weel, my luve, and fare thee weel a while!” These marks his closing remarks to his loved one. He once again shows the reality and seriousness of his feeling towards his love. This is depicted in the last line of the poem when he even quantifies the period he would take but symbolically gives that time in terms of distance he may be heading to, in ten thousand miles.