Stanza seven

In stanza seven, Duffy builds to a penultimate climax with the speaker becoming even more insistent by using the imperative command in the words Take it.

The speaker then reminds us that traditional romantic relationships usually culminate in marriage which here is considered to be similar to a constricting death.

She compares the creamy white rings of the onion with the precious metal platinum loops of a wedding ring which over time will, like the onion rings, shrink in size.

Here the poet is inferring that marriage requires an adjustment which may in fact restrict a person both physically as well as emotionally, warning others of the consequences of following conventions which can be destructive, diminutive and even unnecessary when compared to free romantic love.

The final stanza begins with the single minor sentence and powerful adjective Lethal which reinforces the notion of imminent death to individuality, where a long-term union is pursued.

The scent from this relationship has positive connotations of the pleasant smell of perfume, echoing back to the fierce kiss, and reiterating the fact that the memory of a deep relationship may last, even long after it has ended

However there is no doubt that even where powerful love is very difficult to forget, it may lead you into dangerous situations where the final outcome could be brutal and violent as suggested by the final word knife.

A knife can slice through an onion just as honest language can incisively reveal the truth concerning a loving relationship.