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Therefore what is lacked is not freedom, but actually power. god is called the architect of everything that we use. The choice of the word Architect is not casual. Just like in the case of the Gardner, the capital letter underlines the importance of the character. Since we have two major characters, both with great and grand powers, it may be safe to state that their roles are analogous. The architect does on earth what the architect des in heaven.
The fact that god is only an architect, but not a master is a further argument supporting the idea of freedom. God's role is to project things and leave the compete realization of the project into the hands of the people. Unfortunately, man is condemned to remain nothing more but clay. Not even god can change this: " The Architect of all on which we tread / For Earth is but a tombstone, did essay / To extricate remembrance from the clay / Whose minglings might confuse a Newton's thought."
The minglings that the poet brings into discussion are a symbol for confusion and it is most likely that this confusion is called by feelings and passion. Newton's thought is a metaphor for reason. Byron underlines the fact that human nature is under the complete dominion of passions and this is what causes its damned ending.
In front of human nature even God is powerless and his desire to save the human being is destined to fail. At this point of the poem we have the idea of human freedom as an absolute one. We see man as a hero with absolute powers who fails to realize his dream because of his own nature. The tone of these lines is nothing less than tragic.
There are two more romantic themes which can be identified in the following lines. Byron writes that "Were it not that all life must end in one." Besides the tragic ending as a cursed destiny for the human being, we can recognize the panta rei principle. Everything runs, everything becomes united, everything feeds everything, the world is nothing but a continuous process of becoming where time alone remains unconsumed.
From this point-of-view, no person I different from the other, at the end human nature gets the best of everyone and we go back to being clay, the very matter we were made out of. The magnificent deeds that one might perform during our lives are annulled at the end. Humanity becomes a sort of carnivorous machine devouring all of its representatives in an undifferentiated manner.
The other romantic theme that we can relate to is life as a dream. " Were it not that all life must end in one / Of which we are but dreamers." This is one of the most interesting romantic conceptions. According to it, reality is a mere illusion, w live not in a real world made of real objects, people and relations, but actually inside our head, in a word of illusions, in a life lasting dream. It is here perhaps that we can find the reason for which man actually fails to achieve his dream, to realize his potential, to escape the hell of complete annulment and oblivion.
At the end of the poem the Gardener answers the question of the poet, regarding the identity of the man buried there. It appears that the poet was actually not aware of who the man might have been. The gardener tells him that the man buried there used to be a famous writer.
Once more, a man's deeds are used in order to define him. The fame that the person had obtained while being alive is believed to be the reason for which people still come to visit his grave. Or, we might understand that his fame was adapted to the importance of his performed actions and people come to see his grave as a form of tribute for something which they very much appreciate.
There is a distinction made between the profane and the sacred worlds, just as the pot makes it between the ones who dedicate themselves to either one or the other. The Gardner definitely belongs to the profane world and the fact that he enjoys being paid in coins by the visitors is a clear sign of that. The fact that he can still smile in front of the poet's sad conclusions is another supporting proof in this direction (him too is living life as a dream, being completely unaware of this aspect): "-Ye smile / I see ye, ye profane ones! All the while, / Because my homely phrase the truth would tell. / You are the fools, not I- for I did dwell / With a deep thought, ad with a softened eye, / On that Old Sexton's natural homily / In which there was Obscurity and Fame- / The Glory and the Nothing of a Name."
The deep thought refers to the profound metaphysical analysis made with the help of reason, while the soft eye refers to sensitivity and the open spirit which are needed in order to understand the truth. It interesting to observe the fact that the poet used the verb "was" and not "were" in the case of Obscurity and Fame ., both written with a capital letter, in order to underline their importance. The Name as a symbol of individuality is destined to a tragic fate of temporary glory and eternal nothingness.
Byron, George Gordon. (2009). The poetical works of Lord Byron.: Complete in one volume. BiblioLife…[continue]
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