Farewell Adrienne Rich – A valediction forbidding mourning

I tried to get a copy of A valediction Forbidding Mourning for us today, to whisper quietly together about the passing of the sublime and beautiful Adrienne Rich. Copywrite laws forbid it, but I found something better.  A young woman reading it for us.  Take a look:



Isn’t that lovely?

Adrienne Rich’s ‘A Valediction for Mourning’ can be understaood to be a poem where a speaker whose gender identity is either absent or has been made absent ennuciates passion/ desire / love and complaints about the cold indifference of the lover and a consequent illness, expresses a desire for estrangement from and enlightenment of the other on matters of love  / reciprocation and consequences of failures.  This is a poem about the problems of enunciating the love affair rather than the lover affair itself, and is its own answer to the straightforwardness of Donne’s poem.

There is a wonderful analysis of this beatufiul poem by  G. M. Javed Arif, on Academia.edu if you’d like to read more.  There are poems available to read here.

Otherwise, listen to this wonderful reading again, and be happy for everything Adrienne Rich has left us.