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INTRODUCTION TO A NON AFRICAN POEM” DO NOT GO GENTLE INTO THAT GOOD NIGHT”. BY DYLAN THOMAS

INTRODUCTION TO A NON AFRICAN POEM” DO NOT GO GENTLE INTO THAT GOOD NIGHT”. BY DYLAN THOMAS.

Do not go gentle into that goodnight

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

 

Though wise men at their end know dark is right

Because their words had forked no lighting they

Do not go gentle into that good night

 

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright

Their trail deeds might have danced in a green bay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light

 

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,

And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,

Do not go gentle into that good night.

 

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight

Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

 

And you, my father, there on the sad height,

Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears i pray,

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Rage, rage against the dying of the light

 

Background of the poet/poem

Dylan Marlais Thomas was born on October 27, 1914 in South Wales. He dedicated this poem to his father, David John Thomas, a militant man who had been strong in his youth but weakened with age and by his eighties had become blind.

Thomas wrote this poem in 1951 and the father died one year after. The poet himself succumbed to illness and died in 1953.

 

Summary of the plot

The poem is a son’s plea to a dying father and he wants to show his father that all men face the same end despite all their struggles for life. He portrays the state of the old man when they have got old and approaching death. In his poem, he urges the old man not to give up and yield to the final “night” of death. He begs and encourages him to resist death as strong as he can. Even though wise men know that death is natural, they would not want to die even when they have accomplished all their goals showing that death is never welcomed no matter the age and level.

 

Themes from the poem

  1. Mortality and Transience
  2. Identity
  3. Anger

Poetic devices

  1. Diction: The language is simple and straight forward
  2. Oxymoron/paradox:- Blinding sight (line B) is an oxymoron.
  3. “Curse, bless (Line 17) is a paradox
  4. Metaphor: Night is used as death

“Close of day and dying of the light” are all metaphorical.

  1. Simile: “Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay”.
  2. “burn and rave” line z is ironical, etc.
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