Love which is the most difficult mystery

Asking from every young one answers

And most from those most beautiful and most eager-

Love is a bird in a fist:

To hold it hides it, to look at it lets it go

It will twist loose if you lift so much as a finger

It will stay if you cover it- but unknown and invisible

Either you keep it forever with fist closed

Or let it fling

Singing in fervor and sun and in song vanish

There is no answer other to this mystery.


Myth Summary:

There was a young girl named Psyche who was very beautiful and it neared the beauty of the Goddess, Aphrodite. Psyche boasted and for this Aphrodite thought she must be punished to marry evil and ugly men.

Psyche however did not fall in love with an evil or ugly man she fell in love with the God Eros or as we know him, Cupid. Although she was in love with him she did not know he was a God and Eros wanted to keep it this way.

However, Psyches sisters tricked her into wanting to know her lovers identity so she sneaked a candle into their bedroom at night and shined light upon his face. Eros was furious after she found out who he was, he left their palace and set out to never return to Psyche

Psyche looked to others for help retrieving her husband, she only found Aphrodite. Aphrodite told her that she has to complete many quests and then Eros will love her again. She went through various journeys even going into the underworld, she did eventually complete these journeys and Eros fell in love with her again.

Tone Analysis:

The tone of the poem “PSYCHE with the CANDLE” is very pessimistic, it is pessimistic because it only shows one bleak outlook on how love is. On line 8-9 it says “Either you keep it forever with fist closed/Or let it fling” This shows that the writer of the poem thinks that true love can never be seen and that there is no other way there can be true love. ARCHIBALD MacLEISH uses the methaphor "Love is a bird in a fist" on line 4 and this shows how is outlook on love is very discouraging. Also the alliteration "forever with fist closed" on line 8, this shows how the author only thinks there is one outcome to how love is and only one way love will ever be. Overall this shows how MacLEISH's view on true love is very negative.

Allusion From Modern Media:

In the 2010 hit "Grenade" by the singer Bruno Mars it alludes to the Greek myth of Psyche and Eros, it does so with Bruno mars explaining how his woman has wronged him and he will never love her again. By saying this Bruno mars relates to Eros because he also was betrayed by a woman he loved and he left her as well. In Bruno Mars song it says "Yes I would die for you baby, but you won't do the same." this connects to how Eros feels because he did a lot for Psyche, and she did little to nothing for him, she even went against wishes (Which was finding out who he actually was).


All of this information connects very well. By this I mean that in the poem the bird is Eros and the bird is also Bruno Mars. In the poem if the bird is covered there will be love and if it is observed it will leave, in the myth I recieved Eros and Psyche love eachother when she does what he asks and does not look at his face, and in Bruno Mars' song there is love before the woman he is with betrays him.

Lessons to Learn:

In the myth and poem I recieved a lesson that you can learn is to never disrespect your partners wishes because that can end your relationship. Also you can learn to not go against ones wishes.


Created with images by Boston Public Library - "Cupid and Psyche"

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