The Wreck of the Deutschland: Stanza 25 - Summary

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      Hopkins here suggests number of answers to the nun’s questions. The poet enquires about the meaning of the call “O Christ, Christ, come quickly”. The poet here refers to the Holy spirit who is invoked to let him know the meaning of the men’s prayers. Did she love Him like a lover? Did she want to be immortal by her death? But other passengers didn’t harbor such intentions. So she is suddenly wakened by their loud laments “Woke thee with all we are perishing in the weather of Genesareth” or if she wants to be a martyr. Or did she want to go near them or feel the excruciating Hangs of death.

Line by Line Analysis

Lines 1-2: The majesty.....original Breath: The poet is not clear in his understanding the chief nuns’ world, though the chief nun’s words have a majestic effect. The poet invokes the ‘Holy spirit’ to let him know the meaning of her words.

Arch: original

Lines 3-4: Is it love.....lovely Death

Her lover - Christ, Breathe - speak, tell

The nun is Christ’s lover. Here nun is regarded as Christ’ spouse. The poet wants to know the meaning of nuns words as he himself fails to interpret if she wanted to die as his lover and become immortal. The Holy spirit is called upon to provide an answer to this dilemma.

Lines 5-6: They were else.....Gennesareth: The other passenger’s way of thinking was quite different from the men’s. Though the chief nun wanted to be immortalized by dying, when threatened with a danger to their lift the disciples woke up crying to be saved from the stormy sea.

Line 7-8: Or is it th at.....combating keen?
Or was it again for the crown of martyrdom. Or she was mere keen to be nearer to Christ as she could no longer tolerate torments of the approaching death.

keen: death.

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