If you're still sad about saying goodbye to somebody to the point that you can't even hear their name without getting a little upset, there must be love involved. Or, if not love, then something really close to love must be going on. Now, usually, love poems are all about "I love you so much. You're so beautiful," etc., etc. "When We Two Parted," however, is a bit different. It's all about what happens when love doesn't go so well—when the relationship ends, and how the pain lingers on.
Questions About Love
Does it seem like the speaker is still in love with his old flame? How can you tell?
What do you make of the speaker's intent to be silent and cry if he ever meets his girl again? Does this seem very loving to you?
Do you think the mysterious woman ever really loved the speaker? Or was he just a fling for her? Why do you think so?
Chew on This
The vagueness of this poem means that it could really be about any of the many different kinds of love (except, maybe, love of late-night pudding snacks).
Love makes everything harder. Breakups and goodbyes would make us feel a lot less like the speaker if love weren't involved. Happy now?