Anne Bradstreet: Poems

upon the burning of our house poem

The image of a heavenly home is clearly conventional. does it provide a fitting conclusion to the poem? or does if suggest an easy answer to a difficult situation?


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Despite her exhortations to herself, the next lines reveal the poet's ambivalence about relinquishing all of her possessions to God. She tries to shake off this mindset by reminding herself that "All's Vanity," and that she has an even grander home, built by God, waiting for her in Heaven. This new home will be permanent and not subject to fire or any other vicissitudes of earthly existence. She bids farewell to her home and reminds herself that her "hope and Treasure lie above."

Despite the poet's last words, critics believe the she is not as reconciled to her loss as she suggests. Her despair is manifest. Her home has been profoundly important to her, not only for the possessions it housed but because it was a symbol of her entire life with her husband and children. It was the seat of her role as a woman.