MIXED EMOTIONS Should the upcoming stanza from Byrons poem be omitted from the final draft of the poem? Many people ask this question because it could change the meaning of the poem entirely. Each individual needs to look at the entire poem and decide for himself and make a fair judgement. Then fare the well, Fanny Now doubly undone, To prove false unto many As faithless to one. Thou art past recalling Even would I recall, For the woman once falling Forever must fall. This is a verse that was left out of Lord Byrons final draft of the poem When We Two Parted. It can thoroughly be argued whether or not this stanza should or should not have been taken out of the version of the poem that we read today. I personally feel that the verse should have been deleted from the poem for many reasons.
First of all, I feel that once a poem mentions a name, it somehow loses some important meanings a symbolism for the reader. Also, a name can cause the general reader to no longer be able to relate and get the most out of the poem. In my opinion, it is really important for a reader to be able to relate what he is reading to his own life. This helps him to get a full understanding of what messages that the poem is trying to convey. The use of names in certain poems can make that task much more difficult for a reader to accomplish. In Byrons poem, Lady Frances Wedderburn Webster is the subject of his poem and he refers to her as Fanny in the verse of the final draft.
I do not think that the poem loses any meaning because the stanza was left out of it. Actually, the first time I read the poem, I was really drawn to it because of all the emotions that were brought forth. An example of an emotion that was present in the poem comes from the second stanza. The dew of the morning Sunk chill on my brow- It felt like the warning Of what I feel now. In this part of the poem, Byron is referring to the sorrow that he is feeling because Fanny is no longer with him. He is mourning over her because she has passed away. Another aspect of this sorrow is that he cannot express his feelings openly because he and Fanny were the subject of gossip because it was thought that they were having an intimate affair.
They did supposedly have a close relationship, but it was strictly a plutonic one. I also think that this is a very important reason as to why he decided to delete the verse out of his poem. Even though he is writing about a particularly important person from his life, the emotions of sadness and the feelings of despair are not lost because he decided not to mention Lady Francess name outright. In fact, because the name is not clearly mentioned in the poem, it allows someone who has experienced a similar loss in his or her life to really identify with the feelings that Byron is expressing in his poem. The reader can therefore take personal solace in the poems words and deal with the loss. It can also allow a person to release any of his pent up emotions.
Honestly, when I noticed the footnotes and the missing stanza at the bottom of the page, I put the verse into the poem and it really did not have the same meaning and symbolism to me. This is due to the mentioning of Fanny. In my opinion, this puts a vast amount of distance between the poem and the reader. It does not allow the reader to feel the same emotions or be able to fully relate to the poem. Instead, the stanza causes the reader to express more feelings of empathy. I do not think that Byron wrote this poem in order to receive sympathy.
Personally, that is the effect that the missing stanza had on me. On the contrary, I am sure that many people feel that the verse should not have been omitted from the final draft of the poem. This is because a lot of people feel that names can and do add a lot of symbolism and meaning to certain works. It is also argued that this is what Byron wrote and should have kept because it is his situation, his loss, his feelings, and his poem. This is what Byron wanted or intended with the poem.
Maybe he needed to express himself in order for him to deal with his pain and his emotions. He could have written his poem not knowing whether or not anyone else would ever read it. Therefore, it really does not matter whether or not he chooses to put names in any of the poems. Byron is his time was a genius and it should not be up to the average read or critic who thinks he is some sort of demi-god by changing this brilliant master piece. Byron wanted that verse omitted so that’s the way it should be! This particular poem brought out hidden feeling and emotions that I didn’t think existed.
However, with the use of the stated name, the poem lost some of its sentimental value.