W. H. Auden: Poems


What are the two types of love according to Auden in the poem September 1,1939?

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The poet knows he is just like everyone else, “composed like them / Of Eros [alluding to the god of love, representing the passions] and dust [alluding to Biblical passages about human mortality and returning to the natural dust of the earth upon death].” It is a time of “negation and despair” for anyone who is paying attention to Europe. Nonetheless, the speaker hopes his words can show “an affirming flame” of human connectedness and concern.