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Poetry of Christian Rossetti

            "Christina Rosetti seems towards the dark side of life." Choose three poems and consider how far they support this view of her work. .
             A common interpretation of the work of the 19th century poetess, Christina Rosetti, is that her work is depressing, morbid and highly pessimistic. However, in this essay I shall explore this in further depth by looking at three poems: "A dream", "A Birthday" and one of the many poems entitled "Song", beginning "When I am dead, my dearest." By looking at her use of language, imagery, themes and her addressee I shall explore to what extent I agree with the statement that the work of Rosetti leans towards the "Dark Side." One of the obviously fundamental aspects of poetry is the language used and the literary devices employed, and Rosetti's poetry is certainly no exception to this. Saturated with intense description, all three of the poems I shall explore contain language which undoubtedly leads to a justified definition of Rosetti's work. The themes exposed in each poem reveal to a great extent Rosetti's beliefs and moral ideals as well as her views of life and any inclination she may have towards "the dark side". .
             "A Dream" is a biographical poem which charts the events of a dream which the speaker has had about her and her lover. This is a very emotive piece of writing; this being accentuated through Rosetti's use of language and imagery. One of the first impressions we are given from the speaker is the feeling of unity and happiness between the two lovers, represented by "two swift-winged pigeons". They are described as being in "an open field" and "sporting at ease and courting in full view." The open field is a distinctly unthreatening image which optimistically suggests hope and endless possibility for the two birds as they are not physically constrained from their freedom. The pigeons are described as "sporting" which suggests frivolity, youth and vitality.

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