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A Red, Red Rose

A Red, Red Rose


by Robert Burns

Stanza 4 Summary

Get out the microscope, because we’re going through this poem line-by-line.

Lines 13-14

And fare thee weel, my only Luve,
And fare thee weel a while!

  • Suddenly, it's time to say goodbye. Or in this case, "fare thee weel." Hey, same diff.
  • "Weel" does not mean "wheel" but is rather an older form of the word "well"; say it aloud, and you'll see that it sounds really Scottish.
  • The phrase "fare thee weel a while" means something like "farewell, for now" or "farewell for the time being."
  • But it could also mean "take care of yourself for now" or "may you be well." The word "fare" can be a verb that means do or go.
  • For whatever reason, these two lovebirds are splitting like a banana. But we think they're gonna be just fine at the whole long-distance thing. We mean, if your love outlasts the sun, what's a few miles?

Lines 15-16

And I will come again, my Luve,
Tho' it were ten thousand mile.

  • Okay, let's just get this out of our systems.
  • The speaker says his final farewell; he tells his Luve that he will come again, even if he has to walk ten thousand miles (that's a long way!).
  • So hey, at least we know he's head over heels.
  • Here's hoping these two crazy kids can make it work.

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