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Classic and Contemporary Poetry: Explained

SONG: WOO'D AND MARRIED AND A', by             Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography

"Song: Woo'd and Married and A'" is a traditional Scottish song that was popularized in the 18th and 19th centuries. The song explores the themes of courtship, love, and the challenges of married life.

Joanna Baillie was a Scottish poet and playwright who lived from 1762 to 1851. She was known for her lyrical poetry and her plays, which often explored themes of human nature and morality. Baillie was a highly respected figure in the literary world during her lifetime, and her works continue to be celebrated today.

The song is structured in three stanzas, each with a distinct focus. The first stanza describes the courtship and marriage of a young couple, with the speaker noting how "Woo'd and married and a', / And was she not very weel off?" The following stanza describes the challenges of married life, with the speaker noting how "But in a little time she changed her tune, / Woo'd and married and a', / And, O! the difference since Jockie came hame, / And was he not very weel off?" The final stanza brings these two themes together, with the speaker noting how "And still she sighs, 'I am very weel off,' / Woo'd and married and a'."

Throughout the song, Baillie's language is simple and direct, using repetition and rhyme to convey the emotions of the characters. The opening lines, "Woo'd and married and a', / And was she not very weel off?" immediately capture the listener's attention, setting the tone for the rest of the work.

The song's themes of courtship and married life are particularly prominent. The speaker notes how the young couple was initially happy and content, but how the challenges of married life soon began to take their toll. The final stanza, with its repeated refrain of "Woo'd and married and a'," suggests that despite the challenges, the couple remains committed to each other and to their marriage.

Overall, "Song: Woo'd and Married and A'" is a timeless work that explores some of the most fundamental aspects of human relationships. Through its simple language, repetition, and rhyme, it conveys a sense of the joys and challenges of courtship and marriage, while also acknowledging the enduring commitment and love that can exist between two people.


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