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In the 17th century the poem ‘To His Coy Mistress’ was written in this time and the society of that time was very much patriarchal. The woman, were treated with no consideration at all. The men were very derogatory towards the woman. The men instructed the woman to do a task for them; the woman would have no say, as it was out of her place to disagree with the men. They had to just agree to that instruction. The men treated woman as if they were possessions, woman had no say in the matter. In men’s eyes woman were just sexual prey to them, they used woman without considering that woman in fact too have feelings and are not just sexual prey to keep them sexually interested. The irritating fact is that woman had no power other than being the wives of powerful men.

‘Our Love now’ was written in the 21st century. The society has become more of an egalitarian society- meaning more equal. Woman have involved and have become more financially and politically independent; thanks to this woman can now vote!

In comparison with the 17th Century woman had very little power, they were very much dependant on men, not anymore woman in the 21st Century are no longer dependent on men. They are considerably more independent, and no longer are instructed to do exactly what the men told them to do.

The society has considerably changed from being very male dominated (partriarchal-17th century) to being more equal and now woman get a say in what they do (egalitarian- 21st century).

‘To His Coy Mistress’ in this poem the poet is informing us that the man here is in complete control, The outline of this poem is that the man is persuading his mistress to sleep with him, however she would rather not, here the man is having a one sided argument this is because back then in the 17th century woman should not step out of line by disagreeing with their man so the poet has expressed this in the form of a one person argument, only the man is speaking.

In this poem the poet is explaining to us that the men were the bread winners- meaning they were in complete control and ordered the woman about, what they can and not do.

In ‘Our Love now’ however the poet exhibits us the difference between men and woman’s views of the relationship. The outline of this poem is that the man is implying one thing, which is that they can mend their relationship, whereas the woman is implying another that is their relationship has no future for them she no longer wants to fight for it and so therefore she doesn’t want it to be mended. In this poem it’s the woman who has the last word implying that the relationship is no longer, finished, over. The poet cleverly uses extended metaphors to point out to us and to put both sides of the argument.

In ‘To His Coy Mistress’ the poet makes use of hyperbole to persuade his mistress to sleep with him.

“My vegetable love should grow

Faster then empires and more slow.”

“A hundred years should go to praise

Thine eyes, and thy forehead gaze”.

These two quotes demonstrate his flattery of her in order to seduce her. She on the other hand does not want to lose her virginity in this way. He is trying to persuade her that if she carries on at this rate she might die a virgin and that now is the right time she should no longer delay she should sleep with him now.

In this poem other rhetorical devices are used such as dramatic imagery. An example of dramatic imagery is that of:

“Thy beauty shall no more be found;

Not, in thy marble, vault, shall sound

My echoing song: then worms shall try

That long preserved virginity”.

This quote informs us that no matter how hard he tries he cannot convince her with flattery, so therefore he uses dramatic imagery that hopefully she will not like in order for her to change her mind and sleep with him.

The dramatic image he makes use of is that if she dies a virgin when it comes to dead bodies the worms like to eat the remains of them, the worms will lose her virginity for her, and by having the worms eating at her remains her beauty will also be lost.

The poem starts off using the first person singular- meaning he makes use of ‘I’ quite a lot, but as we get towards the end of the poem the first person singular is no longer shown and in it’s replacement is ‘We’ (first person plural) he deliberately uses ‘we’ to make her feel included, a part of the poem.

Marvell uses the rhetorical devices of flattery to convince the mistress to sleep with him.

“Now, Therefore, while the youthful hue

Sits on thy skin like morning dew”.

This simile exhibits that to us that she is trying to explain to her that while she is young and youth stays with her like the morning dew.

In ‘Our Love Now’ the poet has made use of extended metaphors to describe the differences between the men and the woman. The poet makes use of the extended metaphors for the man in a positive way whereas for the woman the poet uses the extended metaphors in a negative way. For example he says:

“I said,

Observe how the wound heals in time,

how the skin slowly knits

and once more become whole.

The cut will mend, and such is our relationship”

In this quote he implies that he would like to mend the wounds for the relationship to become whole again He’s comparing the wound and the cut to their relationship, by implying a wound can heal in time and so can their relationship, if a cut can mend so can our relationship.

And she says:

“Although the wound heals

and appears cured, it is not the same.

There is always are scare,

a permanent reminder.

Such is our love now”

In this quote she implies that the relationship will not mend, the wound was too big and even though it heals eventually within time it’s no longer the same, there is also a reminder, a scar. Their relationship will not be the same; there is forever a scar, reminder.

In ‘To His Coy Mistress’ we indirectly hear the mans voice and not that of the woman

What he says goes. However in ‘Our Love Now’ we hear the woman’s view symbolising her independence, though only hearing this from the man. The woman’s opinion does count.

Marvell repeats now- to remember and emprazing to make use of the present time. Also repeated by the woman in ‘Our Love Now’ the relationship between the man and the woman is dead and decaying in the present, the last stanza “tree forever dead such is are love” Our relationship has ended it was in the past and forever will be.

In ‘To His Coy Mistress’, which is a three part structured argument which traces logical development of an argument- meaning it is structured with great intelligence and detail. E.g. if we had time I would… but we don’t have time… so therefore we must make use of the present time…

This is so ingeniously and deliberately structured in the way that.

There are lots of rhyming couplets – which contain all his emotions and emphasising predictability of the outcome.

In ‘Our Love Now’ which contains no rhyme; emotions they are not contained in a tight rhyme scheme they are let loose on the page, though the poem does contain stanzas which are structured to be opposite to each other on the page- in the way this is structured it immediately presents the opposition of views of the couples argument which are totally different to one another.


The similarities of the two poems are that they both have a man and woman relationship, both men are persuading the woman of their own perspective. And in both poems we hear the man’s voice predominantly through the first person.

The differences of the two poems is that in ‘Our Love Now’ which contains a two sided argument whereas in ‘To His Coy Mistress’ it only contains a one sided argument and that is from the man’s perspective only. However the woman’s opinion in ‘Our Love Now’ reflects how society has changed and what impact this has on men and female relationships.

The poem which I prefer would have to be ‘Our Love Now’ this is because it was written in the 21st century where woman no longer have to be bound to their men in other terms they are more independent and can have their own say. And this poem shows you just that, by at the end of the poem she is having the last word, standing up for her rights and I’m all for it!



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