John Donne

Robert Ellrodt

in Seven Metaphysical Poets

Published in print May 2000 | ISBN: 9780198117384
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191670923 | DOI:
John Donne

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John Donne usually focuses on the here and now. This is a habit of his mind, not a mere characteristic of his art. Donne's intuition of eternity within the space of a moment seems to be a privilege of human love in his poetry. The contraction of space by Donne's imagination is no less remarkable than his contraction of time. His concentration of attention in time and space leads him to constitute an intense moment of his individual experience as a ‘world-for-the-self’. Donne's immediate intuition of a world-for-the-self and a totality of experience was expressed in the language of his age, and was bound to nourish an interest in current views concerning the universe. Donne's world appears to be a universe where the poet is the centre of reference and where he becomes at times his own world. Presence in the world then implies at once an awareness of the world revealed and a reflexive consciousness of this revelation of the world to the self.

Keywords: John Donne; time; space; world; eternity; poetry; experience; universe; consciousness

Chapter.  6376 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (Poetry and Poets)

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