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Unlike Are We, Unlike, O Princely Heart! by Elizabeth Barrett Browning


"Unlike Are We, Unlike, O Princely Heart!" is also known as "Sonnet 3" from Sonnets from the Portuguese. The poem speaks about the differences between herself and her lover. This is written as a Petrarchan sonnet.

This poem, like most of Elizabeth Browning's sonnets, is a fourteen line Petrachan Sonnet. However, this one has an intersting rhyme scheme. It's ABBAABBACDCDDD. After knowing this, it's obvious why it is one stanza instead of three. It has to be in order to keep the rhythm and rhyme!


Unlike Are We, Unlike, O Princely Heart!

Unlike are we, unlike, O princely Heart!
Unlike our uses and our destinies.
Our ministering two angels look surprise
On one another, as they strike athwart
Their wings in passing. Thou, bethink thee, art
A guest for queens to social pageantries,
With gages from a hundred brighter eyes
Than tears even can make mine, to play thy part
Of chief musician. What hast thou to do
With looking from the lattice-lights at me,
A poor, tired, wandering singer, singing through
The dark, and leaning up a cypress tree?
The chrism is on thine head -on mine the dew -
And Death must dig the level where these agree.

Published in Sonnets From the Portuguese in .

Next: What Can I Give Thee Back, O Liberal
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Literary Movement
Victorian, 19th Century

Sonnet, Love, Relationship, Death

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