29th Virtual Poetry Circle

It’s the 29th Virtual Poetry Circle, and it’s time to revisit a classic poet, but before we do that, I wanted to thank everyone who has participated in this project thus far.  Feel free to spread the word.

Additionally, you should start noticing some small changes here on the blog, including possible article suggests at the end of my posts (Thanks Bloggiesta for calling this widget to my attention) and some share buttons, which I’m not overly thrilled with, but they’ll do for now.

I would also love to get a new three-column template that meshes better with my header, so if anyone would like to volunteer, please email me.

OK, Here’s a poem up for reactions, interaction, and–dare I say it–analysis:

Remember, this is just for fun and is not meant to be stressful.

Keep in mind what Molly Peacock’s books suggested. Look at a line, a stanza, sentences, and images; describe what you like or don’t like; and offer an opinion. If you missed my review of her book, check it out here.

Why Should a Foolish Marriage Vow
by John Dryden

Why should a foolish marriage vow, 
Which long ago was made,
Oblige us to each other now
When passion is decay'd?
We loved, and we loved, as long as we could,
Till our love was loved out in us both:
But our marriage is dead, when the pleasure is fled:
'Twas pleasure first made it an oath.

If I have pleasures for a friend,
And farther love in store,
What wrong has he whose joys did end,
And who could give no more?
'Tis a madness that he should be jealous of me,
Or that I should bar him of another:
For all we can gain is to give our selves pain,
When neither can hinder the other.

Let me know your thoughts, ideas, feelings, impressions. Let’s have
a great discussion…pick a line, pick an image, pick a sentence.

I’ve you missed the other Virtual Poetry Circles, check them out here. It’s never too late to join the discussion.


  1. I wonder if the line "'twas pleasure first made it an oath" is a bit tongue-in-cheek, too. Many of Dryden's circle married for duty or fortune or something besides love.

  2. This is a sad poem. But I figure it's not much of a marriage if you know longer have strong feelings for one another.

    Diary of an Eccentric

  3. Dryden is a depressing guy sometimes, but I really enjoy is take on some marriages. Though I'm not sure if there is a bit of tongue and cheekiness in these lines…"why should . . . "

    Why should a marriage be passionless? I think maybe that is what he meant.

    Great discussion everyone. Jenners, I think you're right in that there has to be more to a marriage than just passion.

  4. I liked this one … although I do disagree that a marriage needs to maintain passion to survive. Eventually, it think a marriage becomes more than "passion." It becomes a shared history and common goals.

  5. this one is kind of depressing! sadly it is true though, if the spark is gone, what is left? a passionless marriage?
    granted, you need more than just passion in a marriage, but its very important to keep the romance going.