Am I the only person that disagrees with people having sexual intercourse without any strings attached? In her poem, “Sex Without Love”, Sharon Olds asks the same question. She answers it by explaining her feelings and her experience. Some words that she used that showed the point of the poem by saying, ‘’not love the one who came there with them, light rising slowly as steam off their joined skin?’’ this shows how the poet is questioning sexual intercourse without an actual relationship. This makes me wonder if everyone goes through the same thing when it comes to having a sexual relationship.

In the 15th line of the last stanza, Olds in this line was basically just comparing how people love the pleasure but not the one actually causing this pleasure.  She writes, “love the priest instead of the god”. People are confusing love and pleasure. This line is very interesting because it is interesting how she can compare both religion and sexual intercourse from each other. The question that this line raises for me is, how can people have sexual intercourse without actually getting attached. The poem answers the question by comparing sex to certain things.

My first impression of this poem was, ‘’What the heck is this poem referring to?’’  Even though it made me feel confused, I was intrigued. A couple of lines that especially confused me were, ‘’give them away / how do they come to the / come to the come to the God, come to the / ’’

What I know about the situation is that she is trying to explain how having sex without any type of feelings or connections is weird and doesn’t make sense on how you can just give ur body up and not have any love. What I know about the speaker is that they are the kind of person who needs a relationship in order to give their body away to anyone.  This is suggested by the lines 21-24 “come to the still waters, and not love the one who came there with them, light rising slowly as steam off their joined skin?” The speaker seems to be speaking to an old partner she knew, and perhaps to explain how hurt and confused she was when this person had played her and had taken advantage of her in the past. I say this because she is very concerned and passionate about this topic.  The poem springs from a particular historical moment that had happened to her or somebody she knows. The poem revolves around several themes, including love and overcoming.

If this poem were a question, the answer would be “Sex is nothing without love.” If it were a question, it would be ‘’What is sex without love?” The title suggests that sex doesn’t mean anything without love. The poem’s form is free verse, a poetic style with no regular meter or rhyme scheme, except where it uses structure to create emphasis—to point to a feeling or a theme. While the subtle variations in free verse may go unnoticed on first reading, closer inspection shows that they give the poem greater impact. This form is a vehicle for the content of the poem.  If the poem rhymed, it would not guide me toward an understanding of the poem’s theme of freedom. The poem’s form is what causes the poem to be free and open with no regulations.


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