Holy Sonnet 14 Analysis

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Sin is an act frowned upon by most but done by many people anyway. It is unavoidable by some but others see those sinners as unfaithful and shall be condemned to hell. Through a palpable use of imagery, Donne pleads for his salvation and forgiveness of his transgressions from his God – a God which, in fact, echoes the wrathful lord of the Old Testament rather than the benevolent one of the New. Donne’s use of words like knock, blow, burn, break, imprison and ravish all give his poem a clear picture. He selects these choice words to depict how intense his prayer to be forgiven really is. He wants the reader to envision what he is going through at the time of his attempted repentance. His path to be forgiven is not going to be an easy one but it is one that must be done so he can keep his place in heaven. John Donne portrays many feelings throughout the poem to really demonstrate his true feelings at the time of writing. One feeling that seems to carry on throughout the poem is guilt or shame for what he has done and how apologetic he is trying to be to God. Donne, a Roman Catholic, feels this guilt for committing a sin and is asking the Holy Trinity to exonerate his sins because even though he knows what he did, he was weak and could not help himself. He feels that for his sins, he owes God an eternal debt or servitude. He felt he should have been defending his God’s teachings but instead he broke them by sinning. The guilt for that act instilled in him the idea that it would be necessary to serve God forever. Donne also depicts love throughout the poem. His love for God is so great he would go though anything to be righteous again. This idea can be seen in line four of the poem. Donne knows his God as a vengeful God and even though he will be broken, blown or burned in the process of the cleansing of his sins, he would endure it all to be pure again in the
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