No more the charming strife to hear, The shepherd's vows, the virgin's fear: No more a joyful looker-on, Whilst love's soft battle's lost and won.
Frequently her poems are specifically addressed to members of her social community and might employ mild satire as commentary, present events of their lives, and detail or explore the emotional states of their frequently complex relationships, expecially those of love and sex. The woman's perspective in this poem provides the double vision that plays the conventional against the experiential. Behn was known to have had male lovers throughout her lifetime, most notably the man allegorized as "Amintas" in her verses, but she also writes explicitly of the love of women for each other. Some of Behn's lyrics originally appeared in her plays, and there were longer verses, such as the Pindaric odes, published for special occasions. No more the charming strife to hear, The shepherd's vows, the virgin's fear: No more a joyful looker-on, Whilst love's soft battle's lost and won. The traditional interpretation of this poem is that Cloris, having been aroused by Lysander's advances, flees from him in shame and that the lovers are both disappointed by Lysander's inability to consummate their relationship sexually.
Because she is a woman, however, her response to his translation is not mere admiration, but a fiery adoration, since women are thereby advanced to knowledge from ignorance. But that is only one line of meaning in the poem. He rages at the gods and circumstance but mostly directs his anger at Cloris, blaming her for his impotence. Perhaps it is because her use of vocabulary and form is so traditional that Behn, who was in her lifetime criticized as outrageous for the content of her works, was able, nevertheless, to thrive as a successful author.
She earned her living in the theater and then as a novelist until her death on 16 April These early poems are not as polished as the later incidental poems or those from her plays, but they indicate the versatility of her literary gifts and prefigure the skill and grace that characterize all of Behn's verse. JH to Amoret, asking why I was so sad," the speaker tells how she was betrayed by her lover, and she warns Amoret to be careful and be sure to get the better of the man.
Kind was the force on every side, Her new desire she could not hide: Nor would the shepherd be denied. But it is also about rape, another kind of potency test, and presents a woman's point of view cloaked in the customary language of male physical license and sexual access to females.
This point of view, as presented by a male speaker, is also a highlight of the poems interspersed throughout the prose text of Lycidus: Or The Lover in Fashion. Men are frequently shown as enemies in the battle of the sexes, as Behn's poem "The Return" illustrates.
Since Clarinda's perfection manifests the idealized Platonic form, loving her cannot and should not be resisted. But even those too of my own race, That grow not in this happy place.
The effect of this technique is to give the poems a sense of immediacy and energy that reveals Behn's personality through her works.
No one really knows her birth name or when exactly she was born. He undresses her. Kind was the force on every side, Her new desire she could not hide: Nor would the shepherd be denied. The woman's perspective in this poem provides the double vision that plays the conventional against the experiential. Aphra Behn was propelled into writing for a living by the death of her husband in , and her indebtedness as a result of her employment as a spy for King Charles II.