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Poem Analysis ENC1102

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Poem Analysis ENC1102
Samantha Brenton
ENC1102
Steinke

In the poem “Do Not Go Gentle Into That Goodnight” author Dylan Thomas writes about how people should not so willingly accept the inevitability of death but rather rage and fight against it. The poem was written for Thomas’s dying father and shows how anguished Thomas is at his fathers acceptance of death. Thomas seems to think that it is not honorable or befitting for a great or interesting man to die quietly in old age. In the poem nighttime is used as a metaphor for death “do not go gentle into that goodnight,” and “rage, rage against the dying of the light,” both point to the fact that Thomas is using nighttime and falling asleep as another way of portraying death. This poem is one of the most well known villanelles every written in the English language. A villanelles is 19 lines long, consisting of five stanzas of three lines each and concluding with a four line stanza. A villanelles uses only two rhymes, while repeating two lines throughout the poem, which then appear together at the conclusion of the last stanza. The two lines repeated in this work are “Rage, rage against the dying of the light” and “Do not go gentle into that good night.” The first verse acts as the introduction, stating immediately the authors thoughts on how the elderly should die.
“Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.”
The use of the words burn, rave, and rage suggest an unconventional, irrational response to imminent death. Most know it is useless and futile but Thomas seems to not care and focus more on the slight chance it could do something. The next four verses list off men who do as he says and fight against their death.
“Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.”
This verse can be speculated that it is saying that the knowledge and information that

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