Final Thoughts

For this final blog, I wanted to reflect on this class as a whole. I already knew Oscar Wilde was a genius writer before taking a deeper look into his works, but what I wasn’t expecting was how much I learned about myself in class. I kept coming back to the variety of masks we don within our lives. Living in a simultaneously accepting and ostracizing society means we are all forced to cater to those around us. Reading the various works of Oscar Wilde, I could see how he wielded his mask in English society, and how he lost a little bit of himself trying so hard to fit in. In my research paper, part of what I am examining is how Wilde conceptualized himself and his identity throughout his lifetime. I think the space where he was able to examine and think about things was in his spirituality. 

Unlike our Roman Catholicism today, Wilde grew up with the Irish folk-Catholicism of his ancestors, which had quite the hybrid make-up. This meant that different aspects of religion and pagan rituals were included in their spirituality. Being the place for the misfits and the outcasts, Wilde found the place where he could be accepted by God for simply who he was. Love was the guiding principle in his spiritual and outward life. But in a world where his attractions were thought of as gross and indecent, he did not have much of a chance to let his true self shine through. The only place where the mask slipped was in his art because as we learned from Basil Hallward, real art reveals more about the artist than it does the audience. Pieces of Wilde’s soul found their way into all his art no matter how veiled he tried to make it. Wilde was not ready to confront the truth of his identity until the mask was forcibly ripped from his face.  In De Profundis, We finally get to see a Wilde who took the time to reflect on his life and its mistakes. Even though it was hard to live in a world that hated you for existing, Wilde recognized the error of his ways, and how a material life may not actually be the best way to live. After experiencing true suffering and sorrow, the decadent artist found the importance of the mental and emotional life. There is more beauty to be experienced outside the realm of the material and the pleasurable. That beauty comes to Wilde when he is finally ready to accept himself fully, and shatter the mask that he held onto for so long. It opened up the world for him and made way for religion and spirituality to become the central support of his life, rather than the invisible backbone.

The Art of Othering

This week during class I couldn’t help but keep coming back to when we talked about Orientalism. Talking about religion and how society tends to over emphasize the characteristics that suit its needs seemed very similar to the idea of the other and the Orient, which is simply the created version of the culture as perceived by the Occident. Society tends to do this to anything that doesn’t fit the traditional constructs of the culture as we have constantly seen this occur with Wilde. What I kept coming back to was Wilde’s own artistic style that strove to bring these elements that society desperately tried to hide, and put them at the forefront of his works no matter how veiled they were. We see it in Salomé with the perverse depiction of Salomé and Herod being absurdly driven by their desires leading to the climax of the play. It is also explicitly confronted in De Profundis where Wilde takes the conventional approach to Christ and Catholicism and turns it on its head. The upper class of England obsessed with their own perfection were being called out for their dirty little secrets hiding behind the mask of a happy marriage and decadent lifestyle. 

Wilde himself is a perfect example of someone obsessed with presenting himself as the norm in high society. As we discussed, though Wilde is an Irishman through and through, he was always obsessed with hiding that side of himself because he would be alienated by those in the upper echelons and unable to rise to the status he achieved. Beyond the fake accent and the fancy British values, lied a homosexual Irishman desperate to hide the truest parts of himself behind a quick wit and beautiful art. After being convicted of gross indecency and having the mask violently ripped away from him, Wilde eventually comes to terms with his true self and lays everything out in his letter to Bosie. Since the curtain is split, the only option was death or true acceptance. Writing this confession to Bosie, the one who ruined his life, highlights his shedding of the past and embracing his otherness despite the stereotypes surrounding it. Just like with Christ, who we assume was this perfect person who did no wrong, but in reality, he was a rebel who constantly challenged the rules and hierarchy of society to save us from our sins. Wilde similarly challenged the status quo, although his comparison to Christ is quite narcissistic. Catholicism is integral with the Irish identity, and although Wilde was not a practicing Christian, he obviously knew much more than the average member of the Church. He uses that knowledge to set the average member on edge and question their black and white perceptions of their religion. This is apparent in Salomé because the story of John the Baptist’s death is perverted into a tale of a child’s naive romantic fantasies. Salomé is determined to love John and kiss him, even if it means severing his head from his body to have total control over him. It is already a tragic story of a saint’s death, but taken to a new level by giving Salomé her own manipulative voice in the matter. Society wants to assume a simple story where good always wins, but here we see a complex and messy end with no one winning because of hatred. I believe this was a veiled argument by Wilde to highlight the destructive nature of assumption of character and the pressures of society.   In the same way society stereotyped the Orient, we see homosexuality and Catholicism characterized in a way that suits the constructs of society. Since same sex attraction is not biologically compatible, society decided it was disgusting and tried to hide these feelings from the public eye. Wilde revealed the nature of these attractions and normality of being caught up in those feelings beginning with Dorian Gray as the impressionable young lad with an acute narcissism attracted to anyone who fueled those feelings and piqued his interest. There was nothing inherently wrong with him or Basil Hallward. They were simply interested in creating or experiencing beautiful things, which led them to their own demise. Furthermore, Wilde delves into the double lives these others are forced to lead with The Importance of Being Earnest when he created Jack’s Earnest and Algernon’s Bunbury, which allowed them the freedom to live as they wanted, although this is veiled at the end when everything works out for them to keep their happily ever after. In De Profundis, even though Wilde never admits to his homosexuality, it is obvious he has come to terms with society’s view of him. But he does not care about that anymore and wishes simply for the acceptance of his friends, which is a true development of character because these differences should not be ostracized, but celebrated.

Christ: The Artist

A life of pleasure will eventually catch up to you. As we know Wilde learned that the hard way, and gave us a complete reflection on the metamorphosis he underwent during his time in prison. De Profundis read very similarly to the sentiments of another imprisoned artist, Dwayne Betts, although he did not begin his artistry until after his release. Both men are painfully aware of the issues of the prison system, but both experienced indescribable growth within the system and dug deep into themselves to become great men. As I worked through the long pages of Wilde’s letter, I could not help but be engrossed in the artistry of his metamorphosis. Even though the frame of his art is inevitably shifted by this change, the ever ostentatious Wilde lives on. His description of Christ as the first true artist and individual put the Bible into a completely new light for me. I began to think about it as a piece of art rather than simply the stories we hear over and over in mass. Comparing himself to Christ may have been a little irreverent, but nonetheless he makes a good point about the importance of viewing Him not only as the Prophet, but the second form of the Creator as well. An artist lives to create and challenge the status quo. Christ was sent down to Earth for that exact purpose. Within the lines of this letter, Wilde is challenging Bosie and the larger audience to see the art in the mundane and the beauty in the ugly parts of life, which is basically the foundation of Christianity. Ideas like these about Christianity intrigue me immensely because it adds a new layer to the religion preached to us from childhood. It invites the audience to interpret these ideas for themselves, instead of simply accepting what we are told in school and at mass. Religion means community, and with a community comes differing perspectives, which invites conversation. Laws are made to be broken, and Wilde is sure to point out how Christ broke did just that.  To go a little bit deeper into the grey area, by doing this, Wilde is also solidifying the idea that religion is art with the Creator as the ultimate artist, giving new meaning to the aesthetes who worship art for art’s sake. If religion becomes art, then it gives them every right to idolize the aesthetic and devote their life to art because the most widespread theology in the world basically does the same thing, according to Wilde. When you boil it down to a simple formula, his words are telling the audience to emulate Christ, but in a different way than normal. He wants the world to be a place for the rule breakers and the freaks because that makes the world worth living in. After enduring two impossible years in prison, Wilde emerges more of an artist than he ever was. His external brilliance now burns brighter then ever on the inside, and he himself is now the art. De Profundis provides the step by step retelling of how to truly know yourself. Wilde desperately wants his special reader to understand this, and though the rest of the world wasn’t in mind when he wrote it, it is a beautiful example for us too. Art is the avenue to find yourself be it through religion, aesthetic, or simple nature. It is there to guide us.

The Consequences of Confession

In the spirit of Lent, reading this play about the three trials of Oscar Wilde made me think about the sacrament of confession. While I was sitting in mass today, the priest gave his homily on the confession and how unique of a sacrament it is. Most of the other sacraments are concerned with something physical, like the washing in baptism or the body and blood when receiving the Eucharist, but confession is strangely void of these physical aspects because the completion comes with the receiving of forgiveness. Getting our sins off our chests provides a catharsis that comes to completion with hearing the words “you are forgiven”. In the same way, though Wilde denied his relations with these young men, he brings about his own demise to experience the relief of letting the truth come out. In the excerpts of “De Profundis” littered throughout the play, the audience learns how Wilde admits himself to be the author of his own destruction. 

His life, obsessed with pleasure, was finally catching up to him, and the way to cleanse himself of the sins he committed was by bringing about his own destruction. Throughout the play, it is obvious that Wilde is in an intellectual league of his own, from his responses to the examiner to the excerpts from his writings. If he so pleased, he had ample opportunities to flee his fate of imprisonment. That fact that he stayed seems to imply he was tired of suppressing his true self, and wanted the relief of letting everything come out before him. In his own decadent artistic way, Wilde has created a confessional booth open to the public, where he is on display, via the defense chair, and all his maltreatment of his relationships is being laid out before him. Even though does not believe his actions to be grossly indecent, he does assert that he has taken advantage of countless young men with no regard for the effects he had on them. Wilde is coming to terms with himself in a way that only he could. The publicity of his confessional may have sparked controversy, and Wilde may have regretted his actions in hindsight, but his initial attitude of come what may has these telltale symptoms of a man tortured by his actions ready to come clean and receive the relief of letting the mask fall. We all experience the crushing weight of guilt no matter the magnitude of our actions, and Wilde, being wholly imperfect himself, fell prey to the desire to relieve that weight. He sought forgiveness from society as a whole. He was fully aware how the upper class engaged in the same activities as him and got away with it all the time. What he sought was their forgiveness and acceptance when his skeletons came out of the closet, but ultimately, it was all in vain and he eventually lost his life to their decisions to make him an example. Only in God is forgiveness necessary, and if he had simply done his penance in private maybe we would have more Wilde writing to discuss today. But we all know Wilde was a pioneer for the queer identity. Whispered confessions behind a screen would never have the same effect on us as these trials do. Wilde gave his life for his art, and nothing is more dramatically artistic as a stubborn man falling from grace like Icarus from the sky.

If Looks Could Kill

After taking a deeper look into the man behind the works we have been reading this semester, it was interesting to read Salomé, which is all about the act of looking and the consequences of taking pleasure in that looking. Already, this connects back to Wilde and his wild life as a homosexual man constantly in the spotlight for his curious actions. In the play, the consequence of those guilty of taking pleasure in looking at others is ultimately death. The young Syrian cannot resist his lustful looks at Salomé and kills himself when he cannot take her lust for Jokanaan. The investment in his looking seals his fate, but when he dies no one takes care except for the page, who with trademark Wilde style, laments him heavy homoerotic undertones. The other man who falls prey to looking at Salomé is Herod. His incestuous lust for her leads him to the execution of Jokanaan to satisfy Salomé. Being so obsessed with looking at her, he does not realize the consequences of promising her anything she wanted. The culmination of looking comes with Salomé’s disgusting lust for Jokanaan resulting with her kissing the severed head of the prophet. Focusing on this voyeuristic idea of looking, we can see how this reflects Wilde’s own life being sexually attracted to men. Even though looking seems like a passive activity, there is discomfort when that lustful look is focused on someone who society deems you should not be attracted to. Of course this play was written before Wilde ever went to prison, but we can see the consequences of looking which leads to fatal action. In general, looking is the only activity a homosexual person can enjoy without being immediately judged for their desires since there’s no harm in looking. But here we see Wilde highlighting how there is harm in looking. Once we start, there’s no stopping and the desire for something will grow until it must be acted on. We see this not only in the play, but reflected in the events of Wilde’s life being imprisoned for gross indecency. By sticking a foot in the door, Pandora’s box is effectively opened and you must be prepared to face the consequences. Wilde could not deny who he was, and because he was determined to be himself he was arrested. There is harm in a look because a look always leads to something more. Salomé reveals to us the danger of taking a peek into the more curious parts of life.


In class on Wednesday we talked about “The Ideal Husband” looking at all the different characters in the play and how they try to fit into the ideal of their roles. I want to focus this blog specifically on the women and how they interact with this idea of the “ideal”. Professor Kinyon mentioned how we constantly chase after this perception, but in the end, it does not really exist because humanity  exists as imperfect beings. The futile chase towards the ideal only leads to deception and self hiding. Wilde himself is a great example of concealing crucial aspects of the self to present as something ideal worth emulating. Some of his most defining character traits were hidden away to appeal to the general society. In the same way, I believe Wilde portrays the characters in his play very similarly to reveal this aspect of not only himself, but society as a whole. This obsession with presenting as perfection is nothing but a farce when you get a glimpse behind the scenes. 

Lady Chiltern is an example of someone so lost in the facade that she’s lost herself and her priorities. She epitomizes the vain woman in an unconventional manner being characterized as a very pious woman, but I think because she is presented to be this holier-than-thou figure we can glimpse into the self-obsession necessary to create such an ideal. She tricked herself into believing that her whole life was perfectly good where not even her husband could have a skeleton hiding in the closet. By thinking this way, Lady Chiltern is indirectly revealing to the audience her vanity in the midst of her supposed pure goodness. This contrasts the general perception of the vain woman, who is cast out by society for being too obsessed with herself which is what we connected the homosexual to since there must be an element of self love to pursue romantic relations with the same gender. 

I believe Wilde created Lady Chiltern to highlight to the audience that the upper class is guilty of the same self-love that those of lower status are ostracized for. Since she does not express her self-love in the way we normally expect someone to, like how Lord Goring acts, it is easy to miss Lady Chiltern’s narcissism which we discussed in class. Wilde can wield her character as a double edged sword to criticize the wealthy for their hypocrisy, while simultaneously highlighting the idea of hiding in plain sight. The author himself eventually had his mask cracked and endured imprisonment for his own imperfections, but Bosie, who was a member of this upper class, never suffered the same rejection because of his status. As was mentioned in class, these decadents have so much money with nothing to do that they can afford to pursue this “ideal” facade with no repercussions to be had. 

With the conclusion of this play we see how Lady Chiltern is never outed nor faced with confronting her shortcomings in the same way Robert is. Her facade, which she has all the time in the world to perfect, stays intact to preserve her image of the ideal. This play represents a victory for the vain woman who can hide in plain sight. She has always known the luxury of money, and with that power comes the ability to act as you please with little to no repercussions.

What’s in a Woman?

For the first time this semester, women play a large role in a work from Oscar Wilde. In the previous works we have read, women play a largely passive role often perceived with negative connotations in the eyes of the other characters in the story. In this play, women are not necessarily described better than in previous works, but they take a much more active role in propelling the story forward. Mrs. Cheveley, Lady Chiltern, and Mabel Chiltern are all principal characters in the story, and they each embody a different stereotype of femininity. Mrs. Cheveley is the sneaky gossip, always on the prowl for a new scandal, and orchestrating her own when there is none to be found. Lady Chiltern, ever the moralist, represents the perfect woman who does no wrong in contrast to Mrs. Cheveley. And finally, Mabel Chiltern, the bright eyed beauty, highlights the decadent woman with her looks and fascination with the unique. 

At the crux of the conflict, we find Mrs. Cheveley with her sticky fingers and stolen letters. She strides into the Chiltern household with her agenda and declares war on the happy life of Robert Chiltern because of his ruthless ambition in his youth. There seems to be a prevailing theme of the corrupting nature of youth throughout the last two pieces we have read from Oscar Wilde. Mrs. Cheveley is capitalizing on that fact to blackmail Robert. A curious mascuine air surrounds her because of her assertive and dominant countenance. She does not bow to the intellect of men, and places herself in a position of power over them, which is a distinctly masculine trait throughout the literature of this time. This stereotype is not meant to describe her as a respectable woman, but to highlight that when women grasp for power they end up scorned and hated. Robert’s ambition leads him to similarly morally gray actions, but in contrast, he enjoys an immensely successful life with the admiration of all those around him. This disconnect with what a man and a woman can achieve highlights Wilde’s own perception of women as subordinate to men. 

In contrast to Mrs. Cheveley, Lady Chiltern and Mabel Chiltern embody more feminine elements of a stereotypical woman. Lady Chiltern is lauded as the perfect woman, faithfully devoted to her husband and pure to the core. She is almost disgustingly feminine having it reflected even in the pink paper she writes her correspondence on. Mrs. Cheveley is particularly annoyed by this since the two women were enemies during schooling. Lady Chiltern also acts as the moral law throughout the play. Robert is forced to confront his sins because of her and her unwavering morality. All these traits define the ideal wife. A beautiful, faithful woman who adores her husband despite his faults leading him toward a better path in life. Mabel Chiltern represents a different version of the ideal woman. She is constantly pursued for her beauty, and enjoys the frivolous pleasures of life. She is drawn to Lord Goring for his decadent ideals, reminiscent of Lord Henry but with more concern for his friends, because he promises a truly unique and fantastic life full of material pleasures and experiences. Out of all the women in the play, Mabel is the simplest, in quest of a fitting husband to satisfy her luxurious lifestyle. Wilde would hold her as the most desirable woman because she seems to have the least concern with the serious points of life. Passion and pleasure are her aim for herself and her husband, and what’s more to life than that to a decadent?

Blossoms of Life

This week, we began reading “The Picture of Dorian Gray,” Oscar Wilde’s only novel. I had read this book in highschool and thought it was going to be a laid back read, but upon reading the first chapter I realized there was so much that I never picked up on before. In class, someone said that there was an analysis that said the three men of the story reflected the three versions of himself that existed within Wilde. I was intrigued by this idea, and wanted to examine it within the frame of the various flowers littered within the pages of the novel. Reading a novel by such an enigmatic author is both challenging and consuming. While there are so many avenues to explore, there’s always that underlying question of whether or not we should even look that deep. Maybe Wilde simply stumbled upon a pretty flower one day and decided to add that imagery to his work, or one of his fleeting passions of the time was flowers and their delicate beauty. Nonetheless, what could be the author’s whim becomes the subject of great conversation by those who read him. 

From the very beginning, Dorian Gray is compared to a rose with its deep beauty and romantic connotations, but every rose has its thorns. That is to say, looks can be deceiving. This became increasingly clear with the chapters we read this weekend as Dorian realizes his material luck leaving his emotional and moral burdens to the portrait in his school room. We see Dorian begin his descent from purity slowly, then all at once when Sybil loses her artistic value blossoming in her true love instead of the theatricality of stage life. Here we see how his thorns pierce those who get too close to his intoxicating beauty. In a way, there is a perfect metaphor for the Decadents, who find their value in the material and art for simply art’s sake. Those who become useless to them, losing their artistry, get tossed into the garbage. Dorian, who is the unknowing worshiper of the decadent, destroys Sybil once she loses her artistic value. Although Dorian is lauded as this perfect epitome of beauty and youth, we are beginning to see how the outward vanity tarnishes the inward beauty. Like with the rose, it is dangerous to get too enraptured with the outward beauty because you will fall prey to the dangers below the surface. Duality plays a large role within this comparison with the allure of the facade to shield from the shallow ideals below. 

While the other men in the story are not directly compared to flowers, there is imagery throughout the novel that I think connects back to these characters. When Lord Henry and Dorian converse in the garden, Dorian is playing with a spray of lilac, but once he hears Lord Henry’s ode to the importance of youth, the spray falls from his hand. Lilac itself is a symbol of purity, innocence and first love. At this point, we see Dorian being lured away by the pleasure Lord Henry preaches. Basil is left behind to his world of morals and passion, whereas Dorian is entering the world of pleasure. The spray that falls from his hand signifies his descent from purity on the inside, and in the social sphere. Basil clings to the idea of the pure hearted Dorian, but that man is no more. His first love, his fiery passion, his muse is fading away being corrupted by material pleasures. 

Lord Henry, the manipulator, talks about his previous obsession with violets when Dorian speaks of cultivating poppies in his garden in remembrance of Sybil Vane. Violets symbolize truth, loyalty, and humility. A sense of irony forms when you think about Lord Henry being obsessed with these flowers for a time. We know that he is obviously not a humble person, nor does he have any care for the truth. He leads his life in pursuit of life’s pleasures and once they pleasure him no more they are useless, which seems to run in opposition to truth and humility. But if we look at this through the lens of Wilde, wouldn’t the truth be ever changing and contradictory? In that respect, these flowers perfectly signify Lord Henry’s vision of himself in the world. He does not have the answers, but he speaks out to the world as if he knows all. In his world, he is the truth, and he will impart his “truth” onto his new creation: Dorian. Lord Henry is quite loyal to his new creation because he was a blank slate to be written on. 

Each of the principal men in the novel are complex characters which cannot be embodied by a singular representation, but these comparisons to flowers enhance the reading of this story, opening different avenues of analysis and the overall message Wilde is trying to impart on his readers. Beautiful imagery enhances a story of the dangers of beauty and pleasure. Everything is connected in one way or another, and these connections make life complex and messy leading us down dangerous paths of sin.

Seductive Secrets

When reading “The Portrait of Mr. W.H.” I could not help, but feel as if Wilde was describing himself in his deeply introspective analysis of Shakespeare’s sonnets addressed to Mr. W.H.. The way he described the feelings of Shakespeare and the brilliant muse of the proposed Willie Hughes was much too personal to be simple conjecture. The passion Wilde addressed this mystery with was not the passion of a man unfamiliar with the intricacies of the feelings he described. As we know, Wilde was a man whose passions lied with the male gender. I cannot help but feel, when I read this short story, that Wilde is desperately trying to give his audience a clear representation of his own artistic agony. Being infatuated with the same gender landed Wilde in prison for a few years. This piece, I believe, is a clear look through the window of the author’s soul. 

A controversial figure in his time, Wilde’s brilliance can not be ignored despite his tarnished reputation surrounding his sexuality. His words in this piece blur the lines between Shakespeare and Wilde until it feels like the author is just talking about his own experience. When reading this, I felt it was different from the other works we have read in class. To me, it read almost like a diary entry, lamenting his own not-so-secret love by transferring his obsession to researching the identity of another’s object of inspiration. 

He wonders why he spent so much time on this project, but matters of the heart do not make sense. Being led by your heart sometimes takes you down the rabbit hole, and that is a little of what we are seeing here. Mr. W.H. is a being of pure conjecture, but the author wholeheartedly believes him to be true during his period of infatuation with him. The moment he shares his research and ideas we see the narrator do a complete one eighty. Once his passion project was out in the open, all the love was lost. Here we can see the seductive nature of a secret, which may hold true in Wilde’s own sexual preferences. Because it was forbidden and dangerous a homosexual relationship might be more seductive to Wilde. His written work is a masterpiece of art bursting with beautifully crafted ideas and arguments, but his diverse portfolio and many of the arguments he makes begs the question of a lasting passion. He is a man diametrically opposed to the ordinary, and believes art is a technique that is ever evolving into something new and astonishing. Maybe Wilde himself was one of his works of art, dedicated to the ideal of astonishment. There is no question of his passion or his preference for the male gender, but upon further reflection of this piece and his life as a whole, Wilde is the culmination of all his contradicting ideals. Specifically, in this story about Mr. W.H. gives us a transparency to the author that we rarely get to see. Making art is a labor of love, despite loving in such a judgemental time, Wilde persevered to give us his truly beautiful art. 

Beauty and “Bad” Poetry

Much like Professor Kinyon told us in class, I myself am not a poetry lover either. I find poems to be outside the realm of my literary understanding and completely boring by the time I figure out what the poet is trying to say. That is not to say I do not enjoy the occasional poem, but honestly, poetry is not the medium for Oscar Wilde. While reading the selections we were assigned, I couldn’t help but notice the difference between Wilde’s blank verse poems in prose and his more structured poetry. It felt as if he were trying to conform himself to the box of poetry and lost his artistic flair in the process. Wilde is a particularly verbose writer, and when he tries to fit his ideas into rhymed stanzas it does not impress to the same effect that his other writing does. 

Even though Wilde’s poetic skills are questionable, his poems in prose were more indicative of his true brilliance. This first one that piqued my interest was the poem Doer of Good. Wilde wrote it from the point of view of a savior, God, to criticize those who abuse the gifts bestowed upon them. This cautionary tale serves to reveal to the reader that being given gifts from God is not being given the license to then live however you want. In a similar way to the age old quote that “power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely,” these people reveal the seductive nature of the material world. Before, they were lost. After being saved, they realize how much easier it is to live the “pleasant way” rather than a spiritual life of material hardship (901).  I believe Wilde wrote this tale to reflect the decadent movement. Even though he himself was a prominent decadent figure, Wilde was extremely interested in the Catholic faith. Because of this, Wilde writes his poems in prose as a collection of work warning his readers of the damnation that awaits those engulfed in the life of society and climbing the social ladder. Not only does it make you feel good to have more power and things, but it makes life considerably easier. Wilde acknowledges this fact throughout his writings that we have read so far, but they always have the underlying message that the truly beautiful things in life do not come from society or even money, but from compassion for one another and an ardent desire to create something that impresses upon its audience. 

When Wilde is not restricted by the structure of a specific style, his writing depth increases exponentially. These poems in prose were some of my favorite poems to ever read. As I have seen multiple times in the short time we have been in class, Wilde does not do well to try to conform himself to a box. His ideas are too elaborate to condense into a few words, which is obvious when you take a look at his complete works. Wielding words is a challenge in itself, and not everyone excels at the same medium. So this is me, criticizing the artist that told us himself how not everyone has a gift to create in some forms.