Education free essay: Sex Without Love
Sex Without Love
Sharon Olds paints the bare truths of life in most of her poems in a startling manner that many would label as mischievous and in a pervert’s perspective. Many critics of Sharon’s work particularly take issues with the rough presentation of domestic violence, romance and sexuality especially the claims she attaches on her own experiences. In a moralist’s perspective, critics can easily punch holes in the contradictory moral issues that she resents in some of her pieces of work. However, her style is uniquely identifies her with a class of fine poetry that deals with real social or moral issues that the modern society deals with. In some instances, religions infiltration is evident in important thematic presentation from the author, which can be said to be vital in holding the social fabric in condition. The poem “Sex Without Love” is a classical sample of Sharon’s style which reveals her moral theme in nearly all of her works. The poet displays an important aspect of the modern society with respect to two social interactions namely, sex and love. While sex is an important element of the human race, very few poets would like to venture in its intrigues as a thematic origin. The reason to this fact is the moralist perspective which would hastily classify topics of sexual content as explicit and thereby face considerable criticism. On the other hand, love is a rich thematic area that poets would find it easy to present a wide array of topics that auger well with the general audience. In a rare conglomeration of the two thematic items, the poet departs from her usual rather rough interaction with sex by toning the theme down with the theme of love.
Thesis Statement: Sharon Olds poem “Sex Without Love” artistically presents the discord and intrigues with which the modern society interacts with the two important aspects of the human life; sex and love.
While it remains the moral and religious duty of every human being to observe their sexuality, self control over lust in disguise of love is very important. From the opening of the poem, Sharon wonders how those who fall prey of such misconception get blinded by the sex and love affair which is inexistent in such a situation. The phrase “How do they do it, the ones who make love without love?” is conspicuously presented in the first line of the poem. In an explanation of the innocence that the victims engage in the unprecedented sexual encounter, the poet likens the victims to beautiful dancers in music that they have no idea about. In a similar illustration of the naivety with which the victims approach the lustful intercourse, Sharon presents the unsuspecting nature just as one would for in the case of a new born baby at birth. Innocence is depicted by the fact that the victims fail to distinguish between the lustful forces at the intercourse fueled by other desires in absence of love. This is evident in the second line which states, “Beautiful as dancers, gliding over each other like ice-skaters over the ice …wet as the children at birth whose mothers are going to give them away.”
The poet presents moral and religious issues that she picks from the building encounter from the third line of the poem. By wondering how those who partake in sex without love feel concerning their relationship with God, it becomes clear that it is against the will of God. By finding it difficult for them to find peace at heart since their relationship with God is ruined, religious teachings of love and sexuality. This is illustrated in the fourth line of the poem where Sharon wrote, “How do they come to… the God… still waters, and not love the one who came there with them…?” it becomes evident that the poet finds fault in the manner in which love is kept aside while the victims claim to be aware of their acts. From line five, it gets clear that the very victims are even respectable people in the church and appear to be true moralists in the society while they allow the vice to eat inside their hearts. This double-standards lifestyle is illustrated in the words, “…are the true religious, the purists, the pros, the ones who will not accept a false Messiah, love the priest instead of the God.”
In all these intrigues of sexual intercourse without love, the truth will always remain faintly at the end of the minds of these victims. According to the poet in line seven, “…they do not mistake the lover with their own pleasure … they know they are alone with the road surface … and not the truth, which is the single body alone in the universe….”
In conclusion, the poet accurately presents the conflict that the society fights against, despite the existence of shreds truth that it is incorrect to lustfully engage in sex without love. Religious and moral issues are clearly illustrated by the poet who demonstrates the impact that hasty engagement in sexual encounters without appropriate considerations creates.
Mundoli, Ravi “Sex Without Love—Sharon Olds,” Last Updated 15 June 2001. Web. http://wonderingminstrels.blogspot.com/2001/06/sex-without-love-sharon-olds.html (accessed 26 April 2011)
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