Sara Teasdale’s I am not Yours as a Love Poem

This article is an attempt to explicate the first stanza of Sara Teasdale’s poem- “I am not Yours”. The explicator tries to see what and how the stanza says about love. Sara Teasdale’s “I am not Yours” is a love poem where she exposes her love and care to her lover

The first extract,

I am not yours, not lost in you,

Not lost, although I long to be

Lost as a candle lit at noon,

Lost as a snowflake in the sea.

This stanza is extracted from “I am not Yours” written by Teasdale, an American poet. The speaker of this stanza is a woman. She complains to her man, maybe her husband or lover, for not loving her as much as she wants, and she also expresses her longing to get more love and care from him. So, it is about her longing for passionate love.

The very first line of this stanza, ‘I am not yours’ which is also the title of this poem tells us that she has not given herself to him; she is independent. But the second line expresses her true wish to submit herself to him, ‘although I long to.’ Further, she says that she longs ‘to be lost as a candlelit at noon’ and ‘as a snowflake in the sea.’ These two lines are similes that are used to depict her definition of love. In the case of the first simile, she takes herself as ‘a candle and her man as ‘noon.’ She wants him to be neither morning nor evening, rather ‘noon’ where she can vanish herself as the flame of the candle to the bright day.

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Similarly, in the case of the second simile, she compares herself with ‘a snowflake’ and her man with ‘the sea.’ She wants him to be neither river nor stream, rather sea which can have the power to hide both the river and the stream. Here, she longs to be lost with her man as the snowflake vanishes into the deep sea. In both cases, she longs not to see any difference and distance between her man and herself. These similes support her to express her longing to be lost in love of her man by mind, body, and soul and help to define her notion of love as well.

In the beginning, it tells us that she is not ‘his,’ and later she tells about why she is not his. In the poem, she directly addresses him and tells him about his ‘lack.’ She looks dissatisfied with him at present and wants more love from him. We can find her lines as the suggestions on how to make her ‘his.’ By it, it is clear that he has to love her more to get her back. The speaker’s directness and the use of descriptive and brief sentences help her to explain her longing for passionate love. It is written in tetrameter where the second line and fourth line rhyme; its rhyming scheme is ABCB.

Overall, Sara Teasdale’s “I am not Yours”  is about her desire for absolute love from her man. Though she is not his, there is still a chance to win her heart back by doing more love. It also teaches us to love our dear and near so deeply and we should not take our relation lightly.

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