the journal of the flea

PosterĄG Ellen Zheng at 12:28:18 3/24/98 from

The Journal of the Flea
1. The flea is a very small jumping insect that has no wings and feeds on the blood of humans or animals. How is the flea used in his persuasion? As far as the speaker is concerned, it is nature for the flea to suck the speaker's blood and then his mistress' blood. Of course, their bloods will mix up the two bloods at the same time. In other words, the speaker thinks that it is nature for a couple to do the sexual intercourse. The speaker uses the flea, which sucks them together in its body to describe they make love and join with each other together. The other reason for the speaker to use the flea to persuade his mistress is that during the 17th century, it was believed that woman will become pregnant when their bloods wet the men's blood. Therefore in the flea's body, their bloods mix with together.
2. What do the first six lines of the second stanza mean to you?
Because they are sucked in the flea's body, so the speaker describes that they inhabited in there. However the woman becomes pregnant so there are three lives in one flea space. Perhaps the couple had a sexual intercourse before their marriage. Since the mistress became pregnant, they hod gotten to marry. Without parents' permission, they must only marry and cloister. The six lines of the second stanza mean that the couple held the traditional moral in low esteem. They disobeyed the rules of the society. Although they took the responsibility for their mistake, they had to escape the public opinion and the eyesight of the common customs.
1. It is certainly impossible for the small flea to suck people in. The speaker only wants to persuade his mistress to go to bed with him. And, owing to the idea of mixing in the 17th century, the speaker imaged that their blood in the flea's body mixed in each other.
2. Why does the speaker say that to kill the flea would be "three sins in killing three"?
If the woman killed the flea, they were all dead because they all lived in there. And killing people is a kind of sin not to say killed three. Nevertheless, she will destroy their family.
3. In third stanza, what is the speaker's response to the woman killing the flea?
He thinks that the woman is very cruel. He did not understand why the flea is guilty. In my opinion, I don't think the mistress is willing to make love with the speaker. So she became hateful, and then wanted to destroy the flea (their three lives). Although she triumphed, she lost life as the flea's death. The speaker may take her life. After knowing the speaker is not the weak one, she yielded to the speaker. However it was useless.
Ray, this is my first time to read such a poem about sex. I realized that poem is not only the presentation of perfection or love, but also can be very like a daily life of human being. It seems to include many aspects of life


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