Love in To His Coy Mistress and Remember
On first outlook it would that To His Coy Mistress and Remember both
share the topic of love. They seem to be of direct relevance to each
other, whereas upon closer inspection, To His Coy Mistress does not
attempt to express any emotion at all. Instead, THCM is ultimately
physical and portrays a man’s desperation and lust,
The persona of THCM has written this poem as a persuasion technique,
with the addressee being his current girlfriend while the speaker from
Remember appears to be leaving a message to her soul-mate. The two
poems both mention a lot about time, although in different tenses.
THCM makes an abundance of references of the present tense such as “…Now,
therefore, while the youthful hue…” and “Now let us sport us while we
may”, whilst Remember talks about the future and what is yet to come.
i.e. “You tell me of our future that you planned”.
By talking about the future as opposed to the present, judgement of
alignment is possible.
“Remember me when I am gone away”. This is the opening line to the
poem Remember. Although this line is very imperative, along with “…you
should…” its overall message is good-willed and genuine. THCM however
takes on more of a negative view attempting to con a woman into having
sexual intercourse with him, and stating the consequences if she
doesn’t for example lines 31 and 32: “The grave’s a fine and private
place, but none, I think, do there embrace”, meaning that she will die
a virgin and unloved if she fails to attend to his physical urges.
The alignment massively changes the language used. Remember is very
euphemistic. For example “…when I am gone away, Gone far away into the
This quote is really a metaphor for death. The persona almost makes it
seem like she is going somewhere on holiday. Other examples of
euphemisms in Remember are “When you can no more hold me by the hand”
meaning the physical bond will be severed, and “It will be late then
to counsel or to pray” meaning she will be dead soon and the addressee
won’t be able to pray for her..
In contrast THCM is very graphic and tries to fill the readers mind
with violent and gruesome images. Some examples of this are “Then
worms shall try that long preserved virginity”, “The grave’s a fine
and private place, But none, I think, do there embrace”, “Tear our
pleasures with rough strife”.
Both poems contain a lot of metaphorical content, but again the
alignment differs. In Remember the speaker uses metaphorical devices
to soften the message that she is bringing across (“Gone far away into
the silent land”) whereas in THCM the speaker uses metaphors to try
and hide his sarcasm and...