R S Thomas Essay

R S Thomas Essay

… Dylan Thomas wrote “Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night” for his father in 1950. It was included in his anthology In Country Sleep in 1952. Dylan Thomas’ father was a militant man during the course of his life, and “when in his eighties, he became blind and weak, his son was disturbed seeing his father become “soft” or “gentle”” (Grimes, 2-3). This is one of Thomas’ more personal poems as we see him almost begging for his father to “rage, rage against the dying of the light” (line 19).

The poem is divided into six stanzas, where the middle four offer his father examples of different kinds of men and their approach to death. In the second stanza, he quotes wise men and though they possess the knowledge of what awaits them in the afterlife, they do not go gently “because their words had forked no lightning” (line 5). This is to say they went against the grain and spoke the truth in life but now find themselves rebelling against their wisdom.

In the second stanza, Thomas quotes good men as “crying how bright/Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay” (lines 7-8). …

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