Death: The New Frontier

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"One short sleep past, we wake eternally,
And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die."
("Death, be not proud," lines 13-4)

The first time I read this, I couldn't quite catch the meaning or message of this sonnet. I don't know why, maybe it was the language (I wasn't sure who "thou" and "thy" and such referred to), but the meaning of the poem seems so obvious to me now. Discussing this poem in class helped me to find the message of the sonnet. Donne is being defiant in the face of Death, saying that death is "slave to fate, chance, kings," and so on. The quote I chose wrapped the message together: Death is not the end. There is an eternity beyond death, according to the faithful, and death is but a gateway to a new frontier.


gary said:

thanks. this helped me out so much in my studies. thank you.

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