Tag Archives: poetry

Bluebeard and its Poetry

While reading The Classic Fairytales this semester, the one I found most interesting was Bluebeard. New to me, Bluebeard put me on the edge of my seat as I read further and further into the tale. Seeing his wife be so curious about what was in the locked room and disobey him by going into it, its gruesomeness and suspense kept me intrigued. Doing some research on the tale, I found out there were many films that had been made of the tale, most recently in 2009, Barbe Bleue (Bluebeard). While watching the trailer just now, I found it quite interesting to see a modern-day remake of the tale. However, with this being a literature class, the first question that came to my mind was , Does the tale have any poetry? When researching, I quickly found the answer to my question–yes. The poem I found most interesting was one by Leon Gellert. Titled “Bluebeard’s First Wife”, the poem tells the tale of the murder of his first wife. I love the analogies used to compare her death to the earth (sky, clouds, etc.). For example, “One by one on the stone, The blossoms shudder and die.” This line refers to the women who were murdered at Bluebeard’s hands.  “The dark blue face of the sea” she is claiming to have loved refers to Bluebeard. The context of the poem gives us an idea of her death, why it occurred, and explains her love she had for the “dark” man.

I lie by the garden wall,
Buried and all alone;
The brown camellias fall
One by one on the stone.

Buried and all alone,
Because I had loved the sky!
One by one on the stone
The blossoms shudder and die.

Because I had loved the sky—
The dark blue face of the sea!
(The blossoms shudder and die)
He murdered me at his knee.

The dark, blue face of the sea.
Nothing so dark as the tomb!
He murdered me at his knee.
I knew the truth of the room!

Nothing so dark as the tomb
For the vile revenge of the vain.
I knew the truth of the room
And the price of his hidden stain.

For the vile revenge of the vain
I suffered the knife at my skin,
And the price of his hidden stain
Was two and eleven a tin!

I suffered the knife at my skin;
I knew the dye that he used
Was two and eleven a tin.
I confess I was somewhat amused.

I knew the dye that he used.
I heard the stitch of my shroud.
I confess I was somewhat amused
At the fury that burst like a cloud.

I heard the stitch of my shroud,
And all of the world disappeared
At the fury that burst like a cloud
From the heaven’s blue of his beard.

And all of the world disappeared!
I lie by the garden wall.
From the heaven’s blue of his beard
The brown camellias fall.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized