Please can you discuss the metre and rhythm in Dylan Thomas's 'Do not go Gentle into that Good Night'?  

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The form that Dylan Thomas chose for the poem that admonishes his father to “rage against the dying of the light” is a villanelle: a nineteen-line poem with two rhymes throughout, consisting of five tercets and a quatrain, with the first and third lines of the opening tercet recurring alternately at the end of the other tercets and with both repeated at the close of the concluding quatrain. A tercet is a set or group of three lines of verse rhyming together or connected by rhyme.

All good villanelles have two things in common. First, villanelles have strong opening tercets , with the first and third lines providing a two-part refrain. Thomas’s villanelle is in iambic pentameter. This villanelle builds in tone and intensity from one stanza to the next. The poem finally concludes with an address to the speaker’s father, with a conflicting plea to both curse and bless...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 470 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial

Already a member? Log in here.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on