Philip Larkin Here

Category: Philip Larkin, Poetry
Last Updated: 10 Mar 2020
Pages: 4 Views: 121

He can see everyday life during his journey, "traffic", "workmen at dawn". He also describes his runner into hull by the use Of the widening Of the river Hummer, which runs through Hull. It shows that he started his journey where the river was thin and at its source and has followed the winding path to its mouth. At the end of the first stanza, Larkin uses a mixture of impressions to describe the nature around him, "gold clouds" and "shining gull marked mud".

Larkin is using this mixture of positive words to describe a negative scene to portray a kind of beauty, Larkin tells the reader how it is, he is an observer. In the second stanza, Larkin describes the town, which shows that Larkin is near the ND of his journey. Larkin begins his portrayal of the town by using a list of descriptive words such as "scattered streets", "barge filled waters, "spires and cranes". These different descriptive words show the activity of the port and portray a sense of confusion (scattered and crowded).

Hull is a very busy port town and used in exporting lots of goods and has been like that for many years, which is why Larkin is able to use the historic nature of the town in his poem, " slave museum", "residents of raw estates" (the word raw here suggests new, which shows how the port has probably been regenerated after the destruction caused in the war and the increase in demand for houses). Larkin is also telling the reader the time period in which he is writing in, "grim head-scarred wives", generally worn by working class women; however the word grim puts a more depressing look on things.

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The time period is also portrayed in the description of the buses, "flat faced trolleys", the new style of bus, with a flat face instead of curved. Also the list of different items t the end of stanza 2 show the boom in Britain after the Second World War with new technologies and the explosion of materialism. In stanza 3, the first line Larkin says "urban yet simple", this can either be interpreted in a negative way or a positive way. It could show how Larkin looks down on them and feels as though he is better than them which is negative, however, it could be portrayed as though Larkin is admiring their lifestyle in a nicer, positive way.

Larkin describes the port as "fishy-smelling pastoral Of ships" the word pastoral is a strange word to use however it is a link to the country side (pastoral farming) and is also a possible reference to how the port has hanged over the years and got bigger and more used and so that is why it is "fishy-smelling'. Thee city does not define Larkin, he is not part of a "cut- priced crowd" or want "mortgaged half-built houses", in fact, most of what the city is representing is the opposite of what Larkin actually wants, which is why the last stanza is all about an isolate place.

In the last stanza of the poem, we start to understand how Larrikin preferable state isolation/loneliness "loneliness clarifies" which shows that Larkin is saying that you only really know who you are when you are alone. In the fourth stanza is where we find the first full stop of the poem which can be indicated as the train Larkin has been on has come to a halt. The caesuras in the first two lines of stanza four also help to emphasis the quietness and loneliness of the area where Larkin lived the rest of his life.

We get other indications of loneliness and isolation in the poem "Mr. Balance', where a man used to live in a flat by himself with only the bare essentials in it. "Here silence stands" the alliteration of the "s" sound and the caesura help to emphasis the stillness and how the poem now comes more static compared to the movement of the previous three stanzas. The rhythm is changed by these caesuras which create a longer sentence which also makes the poem feel slower and more static.

Beyond the main madness of the town, Larkin is able to find more description of beauty which would normally be missed because he has no distractions in this isolate place "Hidden weeds flower, neglected. By the end of the last stanza, Larkin has moved from his new home to the beach where he stands, looking out over the water "ends the land", "facing the sun" which indicates owe Larkin is now at peace, away from normal everyday madness, he is one with the elements and has no fear in facing the sun like he does with other commitments.

This is also emphasizes with the soft alliteration sounds used to describe the area he is in "shapes and shingle", "air ascends". Larkin uses very clever use of language in the last stanza as he almost tries to paint a big picture on his canvas for his readers to see which is clearly indicated in the line "bluish neutral distance", he tries to describe colors to clearly show the natural beauty. And the final line of the poem, really sums up Larrikin love of isolation and loneliness with the phase "initiative, out of reach" which are very unsociable words, however that perfectly describes Larrikin personality.

The last stanza is different to the previous stanzas because Larkin talks about cosmically and elemental objects rather than the materialistic objects by describing the sea, sun, flowers instead of plate glassed doors and flat faced trellises. There is a rhyming scheme used throughout this poem which is very subtle and consist of very few perfect rhymes and more half rhymes.

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Philip Larkin Here. (2018, Mar 24). Retrieved from

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