This class will be reading poems of passion: divine and erotic. How is the desire for God related to the desire for a beloved woman or man? What forms and figures do poets deploy in attempt to achieve devotional and erotic intimacy? We will begin with the two great models of divine and secular love – the Song of Solomon and Petrarch’s sonnets – before turning to our main poetic texts: Shakespeare’s Sonnets, Donne’s Songs and Sonnets, Lanyer’s Salve Deus Rex Judaeorum, and Herbert’s The Temple.
-- Requirements: three short papers, routine class exercises, a midterm on literary terms.