In 1999, two average teenagers walked into Columbine High School and retaliated against fellow students. In the poem, “Richard Corey,” by Edwin Arlington Robinson, there is an obvious similarity between Richard Corey and the two teenagers. In Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s poem, “How Do I Love Thee,” she describes death in a different light. Not only is death a major theme in both of these poems, but also religion and love.
In the poem, “How Do I Love Thee,” the author conveys how death is not a barrier between her and her objection of affection. This can be seen by how she states, “I shall love thee better after death.” In contrast, the poem, “Richard Corey,” the author expresses that this is a man that seemed to have everything. Manners, congeniality, riches and happiness should have created a wonderful life, but he ended up killing himself. For example, self-alienation is shown when he says, “Richard Corey, one calm summer night, went home and but a bullet through his head.”
The author associates her love to the best she can be. She loves him continuously and her love will endure forever. The constant repetition of “I love thee” emphasizes the strength of her love and its lasting quality. In the second poem, the people loved and admired this man for the fact that he seemed to have everything they wanted. For instance, this is shown when he states, “In fine, we thought that he has everything to make us wish that we were in his place.”
In conclusion, I believe Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s ideal of love is very old fashioned and would not be realistic in today’s world. In the poem it compares her love to, “as men strive for right,” and men are not the sole provider for the family anymore. I also think in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem that there are many people today that lead Richard Corey’s life; on the outside they seem to lead perfect lives, but on the inside th...