Related Analysis Pages
Vocabulary in Remember
Vocabulary Examples in Remember:
Text of the Poem
"counsel..." See in text (Text of the Poem)
The verb “to counsel” means “to advise or recommend,” but it can also mean “to advise oneself, or deliberate.” Because of the dual meaning of this word, the speaker suggests that after her death no words, external or internal, can help her lover feel better. Only the memory of her will be able to alleviate her lover’s sadness.
"vestige..." See in text (Text of the Poem)
A “vestige” is “a mark, trace, or visible sign of something which no longer exists or is present,” “a surviving memorial.” It connotes the ghostly presence of something that has died or faded away. In using this noun, the speaker suggests that the “vestige,” or “image” of her that is created by grief, is not an accurate representation of her. It is merely a “corrupt” or “dark” representation of what she used to be.
"darkness and corruption..." See in text (Text of the Poem)
“Darkness” and “corruption” connote wickedness and evil. In a Western, Christian context, these words are often related to sin, the devil, and immorality. These two nouns refer back to the “grief” of the previous line. However, the speaker calls the grief that comes from guilt over a lapse in mourning “darkness” and “corruption,” and the speaker says these two things will distort the audience’s memory of the speaker. This type of “grief” is not the remembering that the speaker wants her audience to do. It is an almost sinful perversion of the command in the first half of the poem.