My essay will be based on these two poems about two murders. I will be discussing and comparing the differences and similarities between the murders and the murderers themselves, and also the victims, which brings me to the first and most obvious difference between the two actual poems. It is obvious from the first sentences that the two poems are told by two people from different backgrounds, and possibly different times.
We can see that they are likely to be from different backgrounds form the vocabulary used. It appears that the person talking in ‘Human Interest’ comes from perhaps an uneducated background and more modern times, ” The rain set in early tonight, The sullen wind was soon awake,” Although these words used in ‘Porphyria’s Lover’ may still be used in some modern poetry, most poems with this type of vocabulary are set back in older times.
Whereas ‘Human Interest’ sounds much more modern, “Fifteen years minimum, banged up inside for what took thirty seconds to complete. ” Now, the first noticeable difference between the murderers is the way they are both describing the murders. In ‘Porphyria’s Lover’ the murderer describes the scene and the time leading up to the murder with what would seem to be more depth.
The murderer in ‘Porphyria’s Lover’ describes how he is feeling “Happy and proud, at last I knew” and he also describes the way Porphyria looks to him, which is beautiful, both before and after her death, whereas the murderer in ‘Human Interest’ describes his anger “I’d slogged my guts out for her, but she lied” and he says he loved her, but the because this less educated man’s vocabulary is less fluent it makes him sound less like he loves his lover, as he sounds more vicious and aggressive, but possibly more mentally stable (although, still unstable) than the other murderer.
Evidence of this is the fact that this man in ‘Human Interest’ didn’t plan his murder. It was a ‘spur of the moment’ action, and it’s easy for us all to do things we regret when we are feeling angry or hurt. So, even though he did commit murder, when it’s though about, he would appear more stable then the man that planned his murder and killed his lover with her own hair, and felt happy about it afterwards and thought it was the best possible thing for Porphyria, “… she guessed not how her darling one wish would be heard.
And thus we sit together now,” Continuing on the fact that the murderer in ‘Human Interest’ appears more mentally stable than the one in ‘Porphyria’s Lover’, as far as murderers go, more evidence of this and possibly a reason for it is suggested here: “… surprise made my heart swell, and still it grew… ” This shows that the murderer may think of himself as worthless as he is so surprised that Porphyria really does feel love for him, which contributes to his reason for killing her.
Something that makes the two murderers very similar is the fact that they are both in denial about the crime they’ve committed, as a lot would be, but only one of them seems to regret it. The man in ‘Human Interest’ is in denial in the sense that he is trying to justify what he has done by expressing how he felt when he found out his partner was seeing “the other bloke”, whereas the man in ‘Porphyria’s Lover’ is in denial about whether it was what Porphyria wanted and whether or not she felt any pain; he doesn’t think she did, when clearly somebody being strangled would.
Porphyria’s lover would like to believe he’d done the right thing. But whom did he do the right thing for? Both murderers in these two poems are extremely selfish. I think perhaps they are both equally selfish. They both killed their lovers, one out of anger and the second so she was always his. Neither can justify taking a person’s life away. That is the person’s choice, and the person’s choice only.
Another similarity between the two murderers is that although Porphyria’s murderer thought more, neither of the murderers had planned their actions until their lovers were present. They both acted impulsively, “While I debated what to do. “, “She turned away. I stabbed. ” although the murderer in ‘Human Interest’ more so, which could also suggest that as he acted so impulsively out of anger, he is more mentally stable than the murderer in ‘Porphyria’s Lover’. And yet another similarity the murderers share is beauty.
They both see their victims as beautiful, even after they have killed them, which is particularly strange in Porphyria’s case as after she was killed she would have looked rather frightening, yet her murderer described how beautiful she looked and how “her check blushed once more” beneath his “burning kiss”, which is physically impossible. This could also suggest that Porphyria’s murderer is delusional. And in ‘Human Interest’ the murderer doesn’t describe how she looked after she died, but how he still saw her in his mind, “She wasn’t a tart or nothing.
Although at first site this quote doesn’t appear as the murderer calling his lost lover beautiful, it actually seems that he is as he said it after he had described how hurt and betrayed he’d felt about her seeing another “bloke”. And he also says, “When I think about her now, I near choke with grief. My baby. ” Which would also suggest that he still thinks of her as beautiful, perhaps even innocent despite the fact that she betrayed him.