Who presented to the author a lock of hair braided with his own, and appointed a night in December to meet him in the garden.
These locks, which fondly thus entwine,
In firmer chains our hearts confine,
Than all th' unmeaning protestations
Which swell with nonsense, love orations.
Our love is fixed, I think we've prov'd it;
Nor time, nor place, nor art have mov'd it;
Then wherefore should we sigh and whine,
With groundless jealousy repine;
With silly whims, and fancies frantic,
Merely to make our love romantic?
Why should you weep, like Lydia Languish,
And fret with self-created anguish?
Or doom the lover you have chosen,
On winter nights to sigh half frozen;
In leafless shades, to sue for pardon,
Only because the scene's a garden?
For gardens seem, by one consent,
(Since Shakespeare set the precedent;
Since Juliet first declar'd her passion)
To form the place of assignation.
Oh! would some modern muse inspire,
And set her by a sea-coal fire;
Or had the Bard at Christmas written,
And laid the scene of love in Britain;
He, surely, in commiseration,
Had chang'd the place of declaration.
In Italy, I've no objection,
Warm nights are proper for reflection;
But here our climate is so rigid,
That love itself, is rather frigid:
Think on our chilly situation,
And curb this rage for imitation.
Then let us meet, as oft we've done,
Beneath the influence of the sun;
Or, if at midnight I must meet you,
Within your mansion let me greet you:
There, we can love for hours together,
Much better, in such snowy weather,
Than plac'd in all th' Arcadian groves,
That ever witnessed rural loves;
Then, if my passion fail to please,
Next night I'll be content to freeze;
No more I'll give a loose to laughter,
But curse my fate, for ever after.

Poem Source: http://poetry.poetryx.com/poems/9707/

Publication Date: 1806

     Lord Byron’s “To a Lady” is the atypical poem that I am going to analyse. That is maybe why this poem has caught my attention. Since the very first reading I have noticed that this poem is very unusual not only in form, but also in content; facts that I will comment along this work.

      In terms of form it is curious that the poem is compounded in a long unique stanza (of 44 short verses). However the rhyme has a very simple structure of couplets (a, a; b, b; c, c; d, d…) and almost the same rhythm is maintained along the poem (eight or nine syllabic verses). Moreover, as it can be appreciated, the language used by the poet is very  accessible and easy to comprehend.  
       Reading the title, it can be appreciated that the whole poem is clearly addressed to a lady (who must be the poet’s lover) and although the title of the poem does not summarize the content, it signifies that the poem is not only written by the poet to express all his feelings and thoughts to a lady, but also it is used as a way to make her a request. Indeed the text seems more a letter addressed to a Lady than a poem itself. The poem also has a kind of “sub-title” which expresses a specific situation among the two characters in the poem: the lady, and the poet himself. And this situation creates the main point and the conflict that the poem deals with. Reading the poem, one can observe that there is a conflict between the two lovers. That is, that the lady is not sure about their relationship and the main purpose of the author by writing this poem is to convince her that their love is truly and forever enduring.

      This poem seems to be divided in three parts: a kind of introduction, a nucleus and a conclusion. In the first part of the poem, the poet begins the text using a tacit element (the locks that the girl has presented him) to make a parallel of their love (lines 1-2) just to say that their love is more firmer and entwined than the locks themselves. Then, the author presents some troubles they have: the girl has doubts and jealousy (and sometimes the author himself too), but at the same time, he tries to convince her that their love is fixed and true (lines 3 until 9), so all that “unmeaning protestations” are useless because their love is above all of this. It is curious the way the poet ends this part with the sentence “Merely to make our love romantic” (line 10) which gives us the ironic point of view that the author has about the typical idea he has of “romantic love” which seems to be stronger if its surrounded by pain, suffering… fact that the author seems to disagree with this sarcastic verse.

      The second part of the poem begins with some direct questions that the poet makes to the lady herself, and where he tells her that all the pain and anguish she is suffering is of her own fault. It is supposed that the girl after choosing the day of their meeting in a garden, she is ashamed and regrets it and the author tries to induce her of how stupid it is to cry because it is a torment she herself has created(line 12). Then, the author focuses on the main topic of the poem, the explanation of why do they have to meet there? The poet uses many literary references to tell the lady that this place (the garden) is the real good one for “assignation” (where the lovers meet). The first one is the use of the most known couple in romantic literature (Romeo and Juliet). Here, concretely, the poet refers to the author himself, Shakes-peare, and the girl of the couple, Juliet (lines 18-19), then the author uses the reference of the muses (Greek reference element for inspiration) and the Bard, where the author makes a duel about where do those figures (the Bards and the muses) have put the place of assignation  (at Christmas, in Britain) and the fact that he thinks that if those figures had thought in “commiseration”, they had chosen Italy as the right place to consume their love, which is a better and warmer place for the poet, and because Britain and its climate is too cold ,“rigid” and “frigid” to enjoy completely their love. (line 20 until 30) As we can see the author makes a parallel about climate and love where he identifies that warmer places are better for love and passion than cold and the snowy weather. To conclude, the author tells the lady to think over their relationship and see how silly they are acting with all of that “jealousy”, “whims”… (line 31) and he encourages her to “to curb this rage for imitation”(32) , which is supposed to be the imitation-lover (maybe other(s) lady’s lover) and tries to persuade her to stop thinking and make what they really must do, which is meet and enjoy their love, and the final recognition by the author that maybe the snowy places are better for love than warmer ones (“Arcadian groves”- 38,39 - ) The poem ends with a very poetical and heroic statement about the poet, who says that if he does not please the lady, he prefers to freeze and death than to laugh-enjoy anymore (line 40 until 44)
      It is also very clear that the poem contains many clear sexual references that are unusual in this kind of poetry as for example, the expression “make our love”/make the love (10); or the words “reflection”; “frigid”, “rigid” (28-29-30) which have not only clear references to sex, but they play with the concept of weather and the place of assignation. Another important state-ment about the intentions of the author can be appreciated in “we can love for hours together” (37) which are very obvious, immediate and explicit. 
     In conclusion, this is a very interesting poem not only because of the poetical features, but because the explicit exposition of the author’s intentions which are not others than to enjoy and please the lady

                THE TYGER                   SHE WAS A PHANTOM OF DELIGHT  VS    SHE WALKS IN BEAUTY

THE LABORATORY                                                THE BLESSED DAMOZEL

                 PORTRAIT D´UNE FEMME                                                      THE FIVE POEMS

                             THE THREE POEMS                                                      THE FOUR POEMS