Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Poetry Reads: The Mermaid on Robert Browning



I was introduced to the works of Robert Browning in one of my Optional Literature sessions at Mayo College. And what a wonderful experience that was! My love for Browning's works stayed on and today, I feel blessed to have had a dose of his poetry really early. For who would have created dramatic monologues, voicing thoughts of twisted, psychotic and devastated minds with a flavor of the original and fragmented bits of lunacy. 

Robert Browning was born on May 7, 1812 at Camberwell in England. His father was an abolitionist, worked for the Bank of England and was a literary collector. His mother was an accomplished musician. He studied Greek at University College, London. He decided to write poetry for the rest of his; he discovered his panache for this craft pretty early in life along with his flair for languages: French, Latin, Greek and Italian.

Life was tumultuous; his earliest works were not well-received and he was a subject of derision. However, he persisted and his writings gained recognition and his monumental works followed. The rest is history. He wrote Meeting at Night, Parting at Morning, My Last Duchess, Porphyria's Lover, Fra Lippo Lippi and Andrea del Sarto among many other mind-numbing and haunting poems. To grab an anthology of all these poems, one needs to look for the Bells and Pomegranates volumes.

This month, I ponder on Browning's contribution to the world of literature and the legacy lives on. Cheers to Robert Browning!


(Article by Kabita Sonowal

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