By William Shakespeare
A tender lady tells of her seduction and abandoment via a tender guy who proves to be unworthy of her attraction and sweetness.
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Additional info for A Lover's Complaint: A Poem (HarperPerennial Classics)
Mr Boddy lodges with Mary’s family. Although Mary herself gives him food, her family’s lack of charity is so acute that they allow him to die of starvation. Mary breaks down in admitting her family’s part in this and says to Lydia, ‘I’ve been bad-hearted. You might well not believe my religion when you saw me acting as I did’ (382). Lydia goes to chapel with Mary simply because she likes the singing. Religious music as well as religion itself can symbolize hypocrisy. Spirituality is unconnected with specifically religious songs.
She leaves the public house, but faints on the stairs: a portent of the price she will ultimately pay for the gift of song. Significantly, although Lambeth Walk is only a stonesthrow away from Walnut Tree Walk, where Thyrza and her sister live, their own rooms miraculously take on the odour, from an open window, of ‘a heavy scent of mignonette’ (Thyrza, 34). In contrast, the room inhabited by Totty Nancarrow has a ‘close, musty smell’ (39), and the atmosphere in the rooms of Gilbert Grail and his mother – in the same house as Thyrza – is ‘close; with the odour of the [flowering musk] blended the musty air which comes from old and neglected furniture’ (59).
When did you hear any man with a tenor voice like his? He made songs, too, Mr Ackroyd – words, music, an’ all. Why, Thyrza sings one of ‘em still … It was me as taught her it, to be sure, as I did most o’ the other songs she knows. 63 Margaret also sings with an authentic experience of poverty. Her first song, ‘The Oldham Weaver’ describes the starvation of a cotton weaver, which to those who have seen the distress it describes … is a powerfully pathetic song. Margaret had both witnessed the destitution, and had the heart to feel it; and withal, her voice was of that rich and rare order, which does not require any great compass of notes to make itself appreciated.
A Lover's Complaint: A Poem (HarperPerennial Classics) by William Shakespeare