Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night by Dylan Thomas

Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night book cover
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Discuss the poem "Do Not Go Gentle into that Good Night" by Dylan Thomas. 

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Dylan Thomas wrote the poem “Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night” during the time his father was ill and dying.  Critics believe that Thomas was trying to come to terms with the possibility of losing his father  because they were so close. 

Form

The form of the poem is five tercets [three line stanzas] with a quatrain [four line stanza] at the end. The rhyme scheme in each tercet is ABA with the quatrain’s scheme ABAA. The rhyme scheme focuses on the words night and day. 

Summary

The first tercet presents the poem’s theme of resisting death.  It also gives the first refrain line that alternates by ending every other stanza: “Rage, rage, against the dying of the night.”  The first line of the stanza uses the word gentle implying the opposite to the elderly who are near death to not give up.  The older person should burn and rage against the light going out in his life.

The second tercet begins the references to four kinds of old men who have different attitudes toward...

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