In Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s poem ‘If Thou Must Love Me’ what does the poet mean by “love’s eternity” in the last line of the sonnet?
Or, What is the meaning of “Though may’st love on through love’s eternity”?
In the sonnet, the poet Elizabeth Browning demands true and unconditional love from her lover Robert. When she says “Thou may’st love on, through love’s eternity”, she suggests that the lover should love her only for the sake of love, so that he can love her for ever. So love’s eternity means everlasting love, the love that won’t fade away with time or in the absence of an external factor. Even though her beauty or gentleness may change with time, their love shall remain intact through the eternity of time.
The poetess is convinced that love only for the sake of love will continue endlessly because it doesn’t depend on any transitory factor.
According to me love’s eternity means unconditional, endless love which must not depend on beauty, gentle speech, smile etc. But love only for love’s sake.