A cursory glance through Donne’s Songs and Sonnets would convince most novices that Donne is a love poet. Poem after poem dives in with the word and several use it openly in the title.: Loves Usury, Lovers Infinitenesse, Loves Growth, Loves Alchemie, Loves Deitie. Yet, as we have already discovered, Donne is no Petrarch or Dante, persistently adoring a Laura or a Beatrice. The experience of love fascinates him, and stimulates him to engage with it in a variety of forms. The conventional eulogy, the poem which sets out to adore or worship the woman by praising her, is one Donne rarely attempts. And as we have seen in Elegie XIX, To his Mistris going to Bed, even when he does so, he is incapable of settling for mere physical beauty, and we end up no wiser about her looks or character than we began.
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