Valentine by Carol Ann Duffy Essay

Conclusion of Valentine by Carol Ann Duffy
Duffy uses an onion in her poem as she shows how this object can represent the positive aspect of love - Valentine by Carol Ann Duffy Essay introduction. In this poem she is saying that her love is different and unique. The first stanza tells us she is not giving what would be typically labelled as love like ‘a red rose’. Instead, she gives an onion. An onion is very unusual gift to give to someone you care about. Although onions are acidic, smelly and not very appealing, she makes connection by comparing the onion to several different things such as ‘moon wrapped in brown paper’.

Moons are generally considered romantic in love situations. She continues to talk about how love can make life brighter as she says that ‘it promises light’ and that peeling an onion layer by layer is like the ‘undressing of love’. She is saying that as a relationship becomes more serious, several different aspects of the person are revealed and hinting on physical contact. Furthermore, she is very confident about what she is saying as she uses imperatives such as ‘it will’ and ‘Take it’. The writer clearly shows how love can be good and bad.

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As she continues to talk about the onion, she also talks about how love can either ‘blind you with tears’ of joy or grief. From this example, she is saying how being in love has its ups and downs. While being with the person you love gives you happiness and sometimes, tears of joy it can also leave you in tears of sadness and grief after a bad relationship. She uses metaphors like ‘reflection a wobbling photo of grief’ which suggests that love can be very stressful and leave you very uncertain and not confident about your relationship.

The phrase ‘Its fierce kiss will stay on your lips’ tells us that in love, there is physical contact and every moment with the other person means something and lasts for a long while. She also indicates that ‘as long as we are’ together, we will be ‘possessive and faithful’. The phrase ‘platinum loops shrink to a wedding ring’ suggests that as you go through the different stages in a relationship it could lead to marriage.

However, she contradicts that by saying ‘if you like’ and continuing on to say ‘lethal’. She reveals the alternative side of love by saying that as you peel the layers one by one, it will either end in marriage or everything will fall apart. In some extreme case it could lead to death through depression.

As she had indicated earlier how a kiss can leave a long impression, at the end she describes how love can leave a long and unforgettable impression after the break up. ‘Scent will cling to your fingers’. The phrase ‘cling to your knife’ gives you the idea that love can leave you in several pieces.


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