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On My First Son

Ben Jonson

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2002-03-03
Added by: Amicus
Methinks Ben Jonson's poems are not very popular. I do suppose I'm too late to offer you help; besides, I am in desperate need of help myself.
2002-03-07
Added by: man
this poem is onson lamenting over a lost son. the poet descibes his worst cin as having put to much into loving his only son who was destined to die. He sees his son as his greatest work ("his best piece of poetry") and due to his death, he may never enjoy life again ("as what he loves may never like too much") for he fears a similar loss. The sad tone of the poem is at its peak, perhaps, when the poet states that he almost envies his son, for he simply died and his father now wishes for death. therefore, the reader can understand the poem's ending in such a morbid state of mind.
2002-06-02
Added by: Abbygail
This poem is a touching piece on grief and personal loss. Jonson steps out of his boundary as a methaphysical poet and expresses his sadness at the loss of the "child of his right hand", which significantly is the Hebrew translation for Benjamin, (his son's name). One may then wonder if he expected the great connection he was to have with his son; then Jonson with great irony, refers to the love for his son as being a sin, "my sinne was too much hope for thee, lov'd boy". One senses Jonson's acceptance of the death, despite the state of grievance, he realizes that his son was only on loan to him and his death was therefore inevitable. The poet heightens his emotions when he questions whether to grieve or envy, then, later refers to his son as his best piece of poetry. We get a sense of Jonson's deep loss and should begin to empathize as the poet vows never to love as strongly, so as never again to feel the pain of such a loss. The poem is quite touching when properly interpreted. It gives a real life feeling for a poet, which is not often found.
2003-04-14
Added by: Joe
this poem was good, not the best, but good
2003-05-08
Added by: Frenchie
I would have to say this poem goes down in my books as one of the most heart felt and sorrowful poems i know. How can one illustrate the pain of such loss on a page? Jonson here, i feel, has shown what real poetry really is all about. Anyone who thinks otherwise has a heart of stone or severly lacks interlect.
title is incorrect
2004-02-18
Added by: fanta
the title is actually "on my first sonne", its important that you keep it in that language beacuse it reflects on the era ben jonson was in when he wrote it.
emotional
2004-04-30
Added by: bob da builder
hey I would just like to write that I am studyin this poem in school and the pain expressed in this poem can not be stated on how much this touched me. His use of contrast in the love of his son and the pain death has brought him really emphasises the meaning behind it. The use of rhyming couplets also makes his pain flow which makes it so much easier to read. Inspiring
"On my First Sonne"- the tone
2004-05-03
Added by: Jenny
I'm studying this poem at school and have found, whilst reading it that the most poignant aspect for me is in the way that Jonson brings about a sense of apathy towards his writing and focusses intensely on his love for his son. The reader really feels his exhausting pain!
feeling
2004-05-27
Added by: hana
its very emotional and picks on everyones feeling and ffrom the start focuses on the plot (farwell)
On My First Son
2004-06-05
Added by: brendan
Although Jonson grieves over the loss of his young son, he also envies him. He is glad that is son has escaped the sadness and violence of the world. He is also glad that his son will not face the worst aspect of life: aging.

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