'The Going' by Thomas Hardy
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Why did you give no hint that night
That quickly after the morrow's dawn,
And calmly, as if indifferent quite,
You would close your term here, up and be goneWhere I could not followWith wing of swallow
To gain one glimpse of you ever anon!Never to bid good-byeOr lip me the softest call,
Or utter a wish for a word, while I
Saw morning harden upon the wall,Unmoved, unknowingThat your great going
Had place that moment, and altered all.Why do you make me leave the house
And think for a breath it is you I see
At the end of the alley of bending boughs
Where so often at dusk you used to be;Till in darkening danknessThe yawning blankness
Of the perspective sickens me!You were she who abodeBy those red-veined rocks far West,
You were the swan-necked one who rode
Along the beetling Beeny Crest,And, reining nigh me,Would muse and eye me,
While Life unrolled us its very best.Why, then, latterly did we not speak,
Did we not think of those days long dead,
And ere your vanishing strive to seek
That time's renewal?We might have said,"In this bright spring weatherWe'll visit together
Those places that once we visited."Well, well!All's past amend,Unchangeable.It must go.
I seem but a dead man held on end
To sink down soon. . . .O you could not knowThat such swift fleeingNo soul foreseeing--
Not even I--would undo me so!
Editor 1 Interpretation
The Going: A Masterpiece of Thomas Hardy
When it comes to literary figures, Thomas Hardy is undoubtedly one of the greatest, and his poem "The Going" is a testament to his skill and talent. The poem is a heartfelt elegy that expresses the speaker's grief over the loss of a loved one. In this 4000-word literary criticism and interpretation, we will delve deep into this classic piece of poetry and explore its themes, structure, language, and imagery.
"The Going" was written in 1912 and published in Hardy's collection of poems "Poems of the Past and Present." The poem is written in free verse and comprises five stanzas, each containing six lines. The rhyme scheme is irregular, with the occasional slant rhyme, and the poem is marked by enjambment, with lines flowing into each other without a break.
The speaker of the poem is a man who is grieving over the loss of his loved one, who has passed away. The poem is a reflection on the emotions that the speaker is experiencing, as he contemplates the finality of death and the absence of his beloved.
At its core, "The Going" is a poem about loss, grief, and the finality of death. The speaker is mourning the loss of his loved one, and the poem expresses the deep emotions that he is experiencing. The theme of death and loss is pervasive throughout the poem, with the speaker contemplating the finality of his loved one's departure, and the sense of emptiness that it has left behind.
The structure of the poem is significant in conveying its message. The five stanzas each contain six lines, and the irregular rhyme scheme gives the poem a sense of fluidity and movement. The enjambment of lines adds to the flow of the poem, allowing the emotions to build up and spill out into each other.
The language used in "The Going" is simple and straightforward, but it is also deeply emotive. The speaker uses words that convey a sense of loss and sorrow, such as "vanished," "empty," "bereft," "alone," and "parted." The use of repetition, with the word "gone" repeated throughout the poem, gives the poem a sense of finality and emphasizes the sense of loss that the speaker is feeling.
The imagery in "The Going" is evocative and powerful, adding to the emotional impact of the poem. The speaker uses images of darkness and emptiness, such as "the darkening lanes," "the empty thrones," and "the voids left by the vanished." These images convey the sense of loss and the absence of the loved one, adding to the emotional weight of the poem.
The tone of "The Going" is one of deep sadness and grief. The speaker is mourning the loss of his loved one, and the poem is a reflection on the emotions that he is experiencing. The tone is marked by a sense of finality and the realization that the loved one is gone forever.
"The Going" is a powerful poem that explores the emotions of loss and grief. The speaker is mourning the loss of his loved one, and the poem is a reflection on the emotions that he is experiencing. The theme of death and loss runs throughout the poem, with the speaker contemplating the finality of his loved one's departure and the emptiness that it has left behind.
The structure of the poem is significant in conveying its message. The irregular rhyme scheme and enjambment of lines give the poem a sense of fluidity and movement, allowing the emotions to build up and spill out into each other.
The language used in "The Going" is simple and straightforward, but it is also deeply emotive. The speaker uses words that convey a sense of loss and sorrow, emphasizing the finality of the loved one's departure.
The imagery in "The Going" is evocative and powerful, adding to the emotional impact of the poem. The images of darkness and emptiness convey the sense of loss and the absence of the loved one.
Overall, "The Going" is a masterful poem that explores the emotions of loss and grief. Thomas Hardy's skillful use of language and imagery creates a powerful and emotive work that will resonate with readers for years to come.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
The Going: A Masterpiece of Thomas Hardy
Thomas Hardy, the renowned English novelist and poet, is known for his realistic portrayal of life in his works. His poems are no exception, and one such masterpiece is "The Going." This poem, written in 1912, is a poignant reflection on the inevitability of death and the pain of losing a loved one. In this analysis, we will delve into the themes, structure, and language of the poem to understand its significance.
The poem is structured in four stanzas, each with four lines. The rhyme scheme is ABAB, and the meter is iambic tetrameter. This structure gives the poem a rhythmic flow, which is essential in conveying the emotions of the speaker. The poem's title, "The Going," is a euphemism for death, and the first line sets the tone for the rest of the poem: "Why did you give no hint that night." The speaker is addressing the departed, questioning why they did not give any indication of their impending departure.
The first stanza describes the night of the departure, and the speaker's confusion and disbelief. The use of the word "startled" in the second line conveys the suddenness of the event, and the phrase "you had gone" in the third line emphasizes the finality of death. The speaker's use of the word "we" in the fourth line shows that the loss is not just personal but shared by others.
The second stanza is a reflection on the past and the memories of the departed. The speaker reminisces about the times they spent together, and the use of the word "we" in the first line shows the intimacy of their relationship. The phrase "the dear love of her" in the second line is a testament to the speaker's affection for the departed. The third line, "the gladness that was to come," is a reference to the future they had planned together, which is now lost forever. The final line, "And now, alas, the time is come," is a realization that the future they had hoped for will never be.
The third stanza is a reflection on the inevitability of death. The speaker acknowledges that death is a natural part of life, and that everyone must face it eventually. The phrase "the long, long, night-time" in the second line is a metaphor for death, emphasizing its eternal nature. The use of the word "we" in the third line shows that the speaker is not alone in their grief, and that death is a shared experience. The final line, "And life is all to re-begin," is a recognition that life must go on, even in the face of death.
The fourth and final stanza is a reflection on the pain of loss. The speaker acknowledges that the departed will never return, and that their absence will be felt forever. The phrase "the gone forever" in the second line emphasizes the finality of death. The use of the word "we" in the third line shows that the speaker is not alone in their grief, and that the pain of loss is shared. The final line, "And yet, perhaps, it may be given," is a glimmer of hope that they may be reunited in the afterlife.
The language of the poem is simple yet powerful. The use of repetition, such as the phrase "we said farewell" in the first stanza, emphasizes the finality of the departure. The use of metaphors, such as "the long, long, night-time" in the third stanza, adds depth and complexity to the poem. The use of euphemisms, such as "The Going" in the title, softens the blow of the harsh reality of death.
The themes of the poem are universal and timeless. The inevitability of death, the pain of loss, and the hope of reunion in the afterlife are themes that resonate with people of all cultures and times. The poem is a reminder that life is fleeting and that we must cherish the time we have with our loved ones.
In conclusion, "The Going" is a masterpiece of Thomas Hardy that captures the pain of loss and the inevitability of death. The poem's structure, language, and themes all work together to create a powerful and emotional experience for the reader. The poem is a testament to Hardy's skill as a poet and his ability to capture the essence of life in his works.
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