MacNeice, Louis. "The Sunlight on the Garden."
- the speaker pitifully describes the fading "sunlight on the garden" = the passing time
- announces the end of a chapter in human life = in human history
- addresses his "friend" to inform him that soon there will be "no time for dances" (alludes to C. Day-Lewis's poem and collection A Time to Dance?) because of the impending death
- but: expresses how nice the now closing period was, how grateful he is to have spent it together with the addressed friend, and how grateful he is also "For sunlight on the garden"
- melodic: end rhymes, internal rhymes, regular poetic line
- the speaker weaves his musings into a series of natural images
- specifically: may pity his own ageing and the closeness of death
- generally: may pity the coming to end of illusions, ideals, etc. ("The sky was good for flying / Defying the church bells"; also the image of "the earth [that] compels" implying the change from something flying to something earthbound)
- an optimistic mode: despite his sadness spends most lines on paying tribute to the lost beauty
AuthorMacNeice, Louis. (1907 - 1963).
Full Title"The Sunlight on the Garden".
MacNeice, Louis. "The Sunlight on the Garden". Collected Poems. London: Faber and Faber, 1979.