Larkin, Philip. "Church Going".
- the speaker, apparently a non-believer, enters an empty church
- observes and describes the surroundings, realises the place was not worth stopping for, yet succumbs into a series of meditations about the purpose of churches and religions
- outwardly observes an "awkward reverence" to the place, reads a prayer, and donates a coin x but: inwardly feels dissatisfaction, emptiness, and vanity about the place of worship
- muses about the further destiny of churches: shall they be kept as museums or left to decay?
- muses about the obvious failure of faith (compared to the failure of superstitions in the face of modernity), wonders who is to be the last visitor to seek the place for its origingal purpose, and concludes still standing in the church yet aware of his not having found here what he sought
- neat free verse, unrhymed yet regular stanza and poetic line
- the decaying church = the decaying religion
- a permanent urge to seek answers once to be found in church x no answers to be found here anymore
- sense of dissonance about church being no more able to offer comfort and stability
AuthorLarkin, Philip. (1922 - 1985).
Full Title"Church Going".
First PublishedIn: The Less Deceived. Hessle: The Marvell Press, 1955.
Larkin, Philip. "Church Going". The Less Deceived. (1955). Hessle: The Marvell Press, 1962.