The poem, Porphyria's Lover, by Robert Browning, is a relatively simple poem that uses easy rhyming and rhythm to tell a story of love, only with a psychotic twist in the lover as the speaker. A narrative poem that creates a tone of coldness and distance from the point of view of the speaker, but also moulds the reader's idea of Porphyria's lover being spoilt and whinging. This is quite different from what the central character in most other poems or any type of narrative story with an established narrator. Throughout the poem there is also other techniques such as personification and suggestion of character. Overall the poem shows a dark side in being love lorn, telling the story in a distant voice.
Right from the start, second line, the wind is personified with the words sullen and it being awake. It continues for the next two lines, reading it tore the elm-tops down for spite, and did its worst to vex the lake. The words vex and spite usually apply with people, thus personifying the lake and wind as having intentions (wanting to cause anger or frustration to the elm-tops) and feelings (irritated lake) just the same as people. The next line after that introduces the narrator and central character with heart fit to break. These first few lines set the mood and atmosphere for the rest of poem, both of the uneasiness of the night weather and in the mind of Porphyria's lover. Porphyria herself enters into the poem in the next line, gliding in and shutting out the cold and the storm. This might be a way for the poet to describe what effect Porphyria has on the main character, or it could just follow on with the cold air of the storm.