list Cite; link Link. “Batter my heart, three-personed God” is a sonnet, a short lyric poem of fourteen lines. In the Renaissance, two kinds of sonnets were popular. The poet begins by asking God to increase the strength of divine force to He requests, “Batter my heart” (line 1), metaphorically indicating that he In other words, a relationship with God requires being reborn and rebuilt. Batter my Heart is one of the beautiful religious sonnets of Donne written in a The poet here is picturing an afflicted lover of the God who is hurt because he is him and was probing with fierce anxiety for the right relationship with the eternal.
Consequently, it can be seen as a metaphysical poem, which is written as a sonnet and deals specifically with a speaker who prays to God to ask for battering his heart to get it reshaped by the Lord. Summary The poem begins with the speaker asking God to batter, in the sense of attacking, his heart to restore his soul in the following because he has engaged with the enemy. He wants his Creator to free him from the evil side to secure his eternal salvation.
Form The sonnet contains 14 lines and is divided into two quatrains one octave and one sestet. Using five feet to a line, the metrical scheme is an iambic pentameter Cf.
John Donne. Religious Poetry
The first octave matches the first part of an Italian Petrarchan sonnet and the sestet corresponds with the last part of the English sonnet Cf. Here, Donne uses a mixture, which is typical for his improvisation. The first eight lines have the same rhyme scheme; an embracing rhyme and also the next four lines belong together and cohere with an alternate rhyme. These three units also share different contents. The first eight lines deal with the struggle of the speaker and his request to his Creator to batter his heart, which describes a problem.
After that, there used to be a turn in the third quatrain, followed by a solution in the last couplet, which brings the idea of the octave and sestet together.
Style The type of language often states the content in some kind of concealed manner but if the consumer reads between the lines, the meaning might become clearer, which will be attempted in the following. In the first quatrain, the speaker asks for the penalization by God, which has not happened yet so that it is described with a clustering of verbs: Here the speaker says what he really expects by God in a metaphorical way.
At this point, the reader might notice that the verbs are consistent with the expectations of the Trinity of the Lord. So, the God-Father knocks but should actually break, the Holy Ghost is associated with breathe but ought to blow the message of God and the Son is linked with the lights that shine from his halo, but should burn like fire as the speaker expects God in his trinity to penalize him.
John Donne. Religious poetry. Holy Sonnet (Batter my Heart) and A Hymn to God the Father
It is his goal to grow from the suffer he wishes God does to him. He would be purified if God ravishes him. The poem is a plea for God to enter and take over the poet's life, thus saving him from the power of Satan.
It develops through three main images. The first is that of a potter or craftsman repairing a damaged vessel, and has behind it the idea of God as the creator. The next two image's both explain Donne's sinful nature by comparing him to the victim of a violent assault: In each case Donne suggests that God must act in a similarly violent manner to save him, by retaking the town, or by ravishing the woman, and thus cancelling the wrong marriage.Bethany Brumbaugh "Batter My Heart Three Person'd God" 2013 North Dakota Poetry Out Loud Finalist
The literalness with which these images of assault are developed is undoubtedly dramatic, but perhaps leaves the modern reader feeling uncomfortable. The idea that the Christian Church can be seen as the Bride of Christ comes from the Bible, but Donne's image makes Christ a ravisher, not just a husband.
It is as if Donne feels that an image which is strong enough for other men and women is not powerful enough for him: The paradox which drives the poem on is, however a profound one.
On the one hand, Donne wishes to surrender himself entirely to God; on the other, he needs to feel that the self-claimed by God is still the unique Donne. The poem is both a total surrender to an all-powerful God, and — through its extraordinary verbal energy, as in the very first line — an assertion of Donne's personality. The same paradox is found in a later poem, 'A Hymne to God the Father'.
It has a free-flowing regular rhythm, which reflects the easy acceptance of God's will implied by the poem, and which, as a hymn, would make it easy for the congregation to sing. The rhythm is rigidly repeated throughout the three verses.
Batter my Heart by John Donne: Summary and Critical Analysis
Words and phrases are also repeated, emphasising the singleness of purpose behind the words. For example the phrase 'wilt thou forgive' occurs four times in the first two verses. The argument contains a characteristic Donne conceit, in: When thou hast done, thou hast not done. These devices add a characteristic touch of wit to the work. Despite the personal reference in the pun on 'Donne', and despite also being written as a first-person address, this poem is not so personal as 'Batter my Heart'.
Where 'Batter my Heart' expresses a complex agonising personal struggle, 'A Hymn to God the Father' expresses a simpler universal notion which all Christians can share.
This is a quality essential for a hymn. In this case, however, the argument does not really progress but serves to reinforce and explain the demand made in the opening line.
When thou hast done, thou hast not done, For I have more.