Personal Choice 52

Elizabeth Barrett Browning
























Sonnet XLIII

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways


How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

I love thee to the depth and breadth and height

My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight

For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.


I love thee to the level of everyday's

Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.

I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;

I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.


I love thee with a passion put to use

In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.

I love thee with a love I seemed to lose


With my lost saints, - I love thee with the breath,

Smiles, tears, of all my life! - and, if God choose,

I shall but love thee better after death.


Elizabeth Barrett Browning



Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806 - 1861) was one of the most prominent poets of the Victorian era. Her poetry was widely popular in both England and the United States during her lifetime. Browning published many poems in her lifetime, and many more were published by her husband after her death.


This Sonnet was from Sonnets from the Portuguese, written 1845–1846 and published first in 1850, is a collection of 44 love sonnets written by Elizabeth Barrett Browning. The collection was acclaimed and popular during the poet's lifetime and it remains so. Barrett Browning was initially hesitant to publish the poems, believing they were too personal. However, her husband Robert Browning insisted they were the best sequence of English-language sonnets since Shakespeare's time and urged her to publish them.

























Arguably the finest Italian sonnet ever written and of course the best of her sonnet collection. Perhaps the last line has lost a little of its nineteenth century sentimentality, but I think it still stands up wonderfully as a love poem.

Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Archive
Search By Tags
No tags yet.
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square