Compare the ways in which Hardy presents reactions to the loss of loved ones in these two poems
Thomas Hardy uses change and passing time as symbols of death and loss in both poems: Beyond The Last Lamp and During Wind And Rain. The title, Beyond The Last Lamp, is a metaphorical way of describing darkness as the lamp signifies light and beyond light lies darkness, a representation of pain and misery. The whole poem revolves around a supposedly grieving, mysterious couple that the speaker observes over time. During Wind And Rain is also a depressing title as the rain suggests anguish and sorrow. The wind suggests progressing time, which could be seen as life, and perhaps death because that’s what life ultimately leads up to. A family is the subject of this poem and the speaker, again, tracks their progression over time. It is said that the poem is about the family of Emma Hardy, Thomas Hardy’s wife.
Time represents and is represented by several different objects in both poems. Both poems use stanzas (Beyond The Last Lamp has five stanzas and During Wind And Rain has four) to develop ideas throughout the poem and show the passing time. ‘Ah, no; the years O!’ and ‘Ah, no; the years, the years;’ are alternately used as the penultimate line in each stanza of During Wind And Rain. This gives a sense of time moving at a fast pace and it being terrible and only bringing misery as the line is followed by an image of death.