GradeSaver, 10 September 2016 Web. Larkin has an incredible control of absolutely everything in his writing, though what stood out most for me was the superb syntax. He is the single consciousness of the poem; just as sky and Lincolnshire and water meet along the visual line of the river, so all the Whitsun weddings meet along the train-line and the line of consciousness that belongs to the poet, a paradoxical still point moving through time and space. Honesty, without excessive emotion is one of Larkin's greatest skills. And when I say 'read' a book of poems, usually I mean read each poem once well- let's be honest, in an anthology, I might skim some the long ones from the 1800s - maybe twice, maybe lingered over a few lines a few times.
Great writers can change the way you see the world in a few hundred pages. This cost me a mere 50 cents!!!! The implication is that, although a marriage is a happy event, it carries within the seeds of the death of happiness which is bound to occur in the course of time. Just as Keats never loses sense, in the summer odes, that abundance comes from the process of mutation, of organic breakdown, in Larkin there is never any sweetness without much sour. Therefore, his description of physical appearances of those couples and their relatives is full of mockery. The first two stanzas describe the early stages of this journey, with Larkin itemising the details glimpsed from his train window.
Unlike the introduction to the text which draws the reader into his own eyes, his shift in tone distances the reader from the intimate relationship that has been developed between poet and reader. I was puzzled by it being described as 'dark' by quite a few people. Now fields were building-plots, and poplars cast Long shadows over major roads, and for Some fifty minutes, that in time would seem Just long enough to settle hats and say I nearly died, A dozen marriages got under way. This can't help but colour the way you read his work, and this adds to my habit of reading all poets autobiographically for some reason, I find it easier to remember that books are 'made up', and tend to assume that if a poet writes about cows in a field or the moon in the sky or falling out of love, that these are lived rather than purely imaginative experiences. It was all about nostalgia; a sense of belonging that had been stamped out of England by this point.
Whether or not we use it, it goes, And leaves what something hidden from us chose, And age, and then the only end of age. Great poets can do this in a few hundred words. All down the line Fresh couples climbed aboard: the rest stood round; The last confetti and advice were thrown, And, as we moved, each face seemed to define Just what it saw departing: children frowned At something dull; fathers had never known Success so huge and wholly farcical; The women shared The secret like a happy funeral; While girls, gripping their handbags tighter, stared At a religious wounding. Larkin is abrupt, frank, depressing and straight to the point but there is almost always a small element of hope in each poem. Perhaps it was inevitable, then, that I should love Whitsun Weddings 1964 : 46 pages, the product of nine years of inspiration and revision.
These two stanzas are full of panoramic description of the scenes; that pass by as the train moves forward. Now fields were building-plots, and poplars cast Long shadows over major roads, and for Some fifty minutes, that in time would seem He now takes close notice at each marriage farewell and there is some generalisation … a happy funeral is that nice contrast in the death of one life and the start of another … weddings being a happy occasion, however a mother may lament at no longer having a daughter at home — on the other hand she may be glad to have her married. The next gives him enough time to notice how all the mothers of the brides share the common physical trait of being overweight, that yellow, purple and green are the hot colors of the moment and how every single wedding party seems to include a dirty-minded uncle somewhere. Although he had a couple of affairs, Larkin dreaded marriage and family, and never married. Make the audience feel empathetic. The light, but unavoidably apparent sense of scorn toward that the narrator has expressed in his thoughts about these wedding ceremonies and what they represent undergoes an ironic shift as the train pulls into the station. I prefer to read poetry out loud, but Larkin's poetry doesn't really lend itself to that, which may be because Larkin was a quiet, unassuming man with a stutter.
In this poem, the arrows of Eros become the arrows of Mars—the arrows of war, shot by a body of archers. So have already read each poem a few times,silently , out loud trying to discover, translate etc. Larkin has always been, first and foremost, an observer and a note-taker of life; a librarian of the moments, but not really taking part in it. My knowledge of the relevant history is merely adequate. There is something miserable and scrabbled about the English countryside that Larkin is writing about now. I also loved Talking In Bed and A Study of Reading Habits! This week I read Philip Larkin's fifth collection of poems, 'The Whitsun Weddings' 1964.
I wa I hadn't read poetry for a very long time, so at first it felt strange to be reading this. That being said, it wasn't bad. But the style is all his own. Elsewhere I got a little shiver of pleasure when he rhymed 'decisions' and 'imprecisions' because 'imprecisions' is not a poemy word. The poem's narrator describes the scenery and smells of the countryside and towns through which the largely empty train passes.
Larkin was born in city of Coventry, West Midlands, England, the only son and younger child of Sydney Larkin 1884—1948 , city treasurer of Coventry, who came from Lichfield, and his wife, Eva Emily Day 1886—1977 , of Epping. Larking about is a nice pun on Larkin himself who was probably in the clouds in word thought taking time to be arrested on what was going on around him. This week I read Philip Larkin's fifth collection of poems, 'The Whitsun Weddings' 1964. Each poem I must have read at least four times, some of them more. Larkin in his train journey noticed the couples just married at different stations. In the second movement of the poem, the tone changes as the narrator becomes a detached, middle- class observer, who describes the families of the newly-weds in highly- unflattering terms.