Thursday, March 13, 2008
At the outset, "Unbosoming" in its entirety can be looked upon as a fierce declaration of romantic love for one human being by another. This is, of course, keeping in mind the genders of both poets writing under the name of Michael Field. The ferocity of the tone of the poem could stem from the inborn fear of discovery of the poets' lesbianism, given the age in which it was written. This, however, is not the entirety of the poem's hidden charms. Like many artists and authors of a similar cut of cloth, the use of floral images becomes allegory for the vagina. Ideas of swelling and/or pollination of a kind would similarly evoke images of arousal and intercourse. The repeated and flagrant use of the naturalist floral images within this particular poem only adds to the aforementioned sense of ferocity within it. Apparently, despite the fear and the uncertainty of day-to-day life faced by these brave women of a by-gone era, they still desired each other with a passion that cannot be readily described but as vicious.