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The poem “Love in a Life” was a poem written by Robert Browning. The poem was published in 1855 in a collection called “Men and Women”. There are similar poems with the same themes appearing in this collection. The poet dedicated these poems to his wife Elizabeth Barrett Browning. This poem describes the unending search of the speaker to find his lover in the house they lived together.
About the Poet:
Robert Browning was an English poet and playwright. He was a well known Victorian poets. The poems in the collection “Men and Women” are dedicated to his wife Elizabeth Barrett Browning. He is known for his dramatic monologues.Some of his famous notable works are The Pied Piper of Hamelin, Men and Women, The Ring and the Book, My Last Duchess.
The poem “Love in a Life” is all about the poet searching for his lover in the house they lived together. The speaker couldn’t forget the memories of the life he lived with his lover. So, he starts searching for the lover. He couldn’t find her anywhere in the house. Yet, he hopes that he will find her at one room. So, he continues his search for her. The house is filled with the presence of his lover. In the second stanza the search continues. But till the end he couldn’t succeed in his search.
The poem “Love in a Life” has sixteen lines in total. The poet has separated the poems into two stanzas. These stanzas have eight lines each which are called octaves. The stanza can further be separated into two tercets and a couplet.
The poet has written the first set of tercet using di-metre and second set of tercet using tetrameter. The poet has written the couplet using pentameter.
The poem “Love in a Life” by Robert Browning is dedicated to his wife Elizabeth Barrett Browning. So, the poet himself is the speaker of the poem.
Room after room,
I hunt the house through
We inhabit together.
Room after room, I hunt the house through We inhabit together. Heart, fear nothing, for, heart, thou shalt find her— Next time, herself!—not the trouble behind her Left in the curtain, the couch's perfume! As she brushed it, the cornice-wreath blossomed anew: Yon looking-glass gleamed at the wave of her feather.
The speaker of the poem is searching for his lover in his house from one room to another. The speaker couldn’t forget his memories with her so he is searching in the same house where they lived happily. The speaker is talking with his heart. He says the heart not to fear, as he promises he will find his lover next time. The speaker is talking to his heart, as though he is playing hide and seek with his lover. The house is filled with her presence. The speaker could sense the smell of her perfume on the couch. The waves of the curtain remind the speaker of his lover. These lines show how happily they lived in the house once.
Yet the day wears, And door succeeds door; I try the fresh fortune— Range the wide house from the wing to the centre. Still the same chance! she goes out as I enter. Spend my whole day in the quest,—who cares? But 'tis twilight, you see,—with such suites to explore, Such closets to search, such alcoves to importune!
The speaker is searching from door to door to find her. But, he couldn’t succeed. Each time he opens the door he hopes that he will find her. But he fails. He is searching for a whole day. The speaker says, each time he opens he hopes that she will enter, but the search continues for more time. In the last lines of the poem, the speaker declares his intention to search for his lover the whole night.The speaker says it is only twilight and there is plenty of time to search for his lover in all the leftover places in the house like closets.