Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night by Dylan Thomas

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What are examples of consonance and assonance in lines 1 and 2 of "Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night"?

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Consonance occurs in poetry when the poet uses the same consonant sound repeatedly, often on stressed syllables and at word ends. In line one, Dylan Thomas uses a repeated "t" sound in not, gentle, into, that, and night. The effect is percussive and adds emphasis to the line's effect as an admonition. In line two, there is consonance present in the repeated sound of "d" in old, should, and day. It should be noted that the d's and t's are present in both of the first two lines, which intensifies the sound effect.

Assonance occurs in poetry when the poet uses the same vowel sound repeatedly, often on...

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sadhguru123 | Student

Dylan Thomas was a Welsh poet in the early-mid twentieth century whose famous piece of writing included the villanelle “Do not go gentle into that good night.”

Unlike his contemporaries, Thomas was not concerned with recurring themes of social/intellectual issues and instead was a writer concerned with words, the use of words, and what words mean.

In “Do not go gentle into that good night” we see the use of consonance and assonance. In lines one and two;

“Do not go gentle into that good night,

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;”

Consonance can be seen in the repetition of the “t” sound in the words, “not,” “gentle,” “into,” that” and “night.” For assonance, Thomas uses the second line to display the repetition of the long “a” sound in “age,” “rave,” and “day.”

The first line suggests the fact that the end is near, hence the “t” sound is repeated toward the end of the words. “Do not go gentle into that good night,” could mean that he urges the reader not wallow in the face of death, the end of life.

In the second line the repetition of the long “a” sound may mean that old age is lengthy. Perhaps, since death is already made clear in the first line, Thomas may suggest that old age, in the face of death, may be something harsh and difficult to deal with.