November 12, 2014
Your Love is a Lie Some men know just how to say all the right things to a woman, but in real life they only want one thing. The man in “The Passionate Shepherd to His love” tries to come across as loving and compassionate; however, he is basically telling the Nymph that he does not see her as anything but a passing fancy. He never mentions marriage or even a long-term relationship, but he wants her to come lay with him in a “bed of roses.” Although, he made it sound appealing, the Nymph saw his ulterior motives. She turns his pastoral poem against him by using Sir Walter Raleigh to reply with “The Nymph’s Reply to the Shepherd” in order to reveal his true intentions. She was not going to succumb to his promises of romantic settings because of the fact that nature is never truly perfect. The Nymph replies with a similar poetic structure that the Shepherd uses, but she uses realistic, yet pessimistic, points in order to reveal his true intentions of misleading her. The Nymph does not fail to leave any detail out of her reply that the Shepherd mentions. She uses everything he has said against him in the basic order or “mirror image” of his proposal. The Shepherd argues that they will return to their original state of happiness and have a perfect life if she will go away with him. In order to persuade the Nymph, he appeals to four of the five senses (sight, touch, hearing, smell) as well as materialist charm to swoon her. The Nymph, in turn, uses the senses (sight, taste, smell, and hearing) as well as clothing to show that all these things are temporal and that nature moves from a state or order to disorder. The Shepherd starts off by describing a romantic scene by a river with birds singing their melodious songs, but the Nymph responds by saying that time passes by, using the examples that rivers rage and birds stop singing when they lose their voice. The Shepherd focusses on the beauty of spring and fall when the weather is appealing; in contrast, the Nymph uses the example of winter when the animals are put in barns and the green fields wither. She states that the materialistic pleasures break, wither, and are soon forgotten.
The Nymph also reveals that his reason for wanting her is rotten. She