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Assigned: "London's Summer Morning" (92-93), "January, 1795" (93-94), "The Poor Singing Dame" (94-96).
"London's Summer Morning"
1. What impression of London do you get from this blank verse poem? What is the poet's role in the goings-on?
2. What is the operative principle of criticism in this poem's observations? How does the poem's rhyme scheme help drive them home?
"The Poor Singing Dame"
3. How does Robinson give us a sense of the kind of lives led, respectively, by the Old Dame and the Lord of the Castle? Why is the Lord so resentful of the old woman, and what is the cause of his eventual suffering and death?
4. In the end — judging from the poem's last two lines — who "wins" the unequal contest between the Lord and the Old Dame?
Edition: Abrams, M.H. et al. The Norton Anthology of English Literature, Volumes 2A-C. 7th edition. ISBN 2A = 0393975681, 2B = 039397569X, 2C = 0393975703.