Treasure Island

Mary Elizabeth Coleridge

(23 September 1861 – 25 August 1907)

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Affection


The earth that made the rose,
She also is thy mother, and not I.
The flame wherewith thy maiden spirit glows
Was lighted at no hearth that I sit by.
I am as far below as heaven above thee.
Were I thine angel, more I could not love thee.

Bid me defend thee!
Thy danger over-human strength shall lend me,
A hand of iron and a heart of steel,
To strike, to wound, to slay, and not to feel.
But if you chide me,
I am a weak, defenceless child beside thee.

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

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Read poems about / on: angel, strength, rose, child, mother, heaven, heart, children, wind

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Comments about this poem (Affection by Mary Elizabeth Coleridge )

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  • Sixtus Osim (3/29/2014 3:27:00 PM)

    Whao! Was she beautiful or not? Such strong comparisons between her and the beauty of earth.
    Just as she is so impressed by the beauty of the earth so it is that most people had wonder. Quite a scenic piece of poesy. (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (3/29/2014 1:37:00 PM)

    Wonderful poem. I think I went to somewhat similar emotions writing a poem called ' My family'. Written little differently. (Report) Reply

  • Gangadharan Nair Pulingat (3/29/2014 12:57:00 AM)

    A beautiful poem with love, affection like good feeling. The world is so beautiful and it is the perfect creator of good flowers, greenish enviornment, trees and bushes, the rivers, oceans, mighty mountains and also the human being. The poem is very enjoyable for reading and repeating. (Report) Reply

  • Anthony Foster (3/29/2012 1:29:00 PM)

    Loves balance she has said it all,
    and back again a circle of eternity,
    About the strengths and weakness of overwhelming love for someone. (Report) Reply

  • Kevin Straw (3/29/2010 8:07:00 AM)

    The psychological insight that affection can turn to “a hand of iron” - that love can become tyrannous is true. I could do without the metaphysics of the first verse, and have the second verse start “Affection, bid me defend thee! ” Sometimes, a poem has a kind of 'sighting' at the beginning before it truly begins. (Report) Reply

  • Adnan Khalifeh (3/29/2010 7:39:00 AM)

    Nice poem.
    Dear friends,
    I have read your comments regarding this poem.
    I like to read your comments on my poem too (I give-up) .
    Best Regards,
    Adnan. (Report) Reply

  • Ramesh T A (3/29/2010 2:10:00 AM)

    Beautiful poem telling about the strength and weakness of a loving soul is interesting to read! (Report) Reply

  • Susan Witman (3/29/2009 9:59:00 PM)

    It's beautiful.... You write well. For the rose could be a person or a plant depending on your interpretation. (Report) Reply

  • Bria F (3/29/2009 9:49:00 PM)

    That was a great poem. this poem is like me and how i feel. makes me want to cry (Report) Reply

Read all 21 comments »

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