Lovesick – Carol Ann Duffy – Analysis


I found an apple
A red and shining apple
I took its photograph

I hid the apple in the attic
I opened the skylight
and the sun said Ah!

At night I checked that it was safe,
under the giggling stars,
and the sly moon. My cool apple.

Whatever you are calling about,
I am not interested.
Go away. You with the big teeth.

Carol Ann Duffy

Well, I am sure you have been in love and perhaps you can remember that first time. Can you remember that new found feeling – a red shining apple and how it affected your demeanour. Maybe it was something so personal you wanted to keep forever (by taking a ‘photograph’ if you could photograph a feeling). And being a little shy you probably wanted to keep this lovesickness hidden. You had to open up to your surroundings with this joy. The sun of course new and said Ah. And at night time you could bathe in this sickness with delight – such a delight to be in love! – so cool under the giggling stars. A female perspective of the situation is evident. But let’s face it friends and family might just happen to see any change exhibited from your new found happiness state!

But this love sickness, this little euphoria, is very vulnerable. The actual presence and development of a new relationship will destroy or should I say cure any mental heaven – especially if your lover has big teeth.

No other fruit but an apple!

If we consider Estella and Pip from Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations then Pip had a very red apple. And even on continual meetings when Estella snubbed his advances he was not perturbed and was quick to convert a greening apple back to red as soon as he was away from her presence. Love can be so mental, so individual.

This is a totally brilliant poem from Dame Carol Ann Duffy who was appointed Britain’s Poet Laureate in May 2009. Here is a Wikipedia link …


Your word in my ear ...

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