• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Critical evaluation of High Windows by Philip Larkin

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

KATHLEEN BAKER. ACCESS COURSE GROUP C Write a critical evaluation of a poem. HIGH WINDOWS When I see a couple of kids And guess he's fucking her and she's Taking pills or wearing a diaphragm, I know this is paradise Everyone old has dreamed of all their lives Bonds and gestures pushed to one side Like an outdated combine harvester, And everyone young going down the long slide To happiness, endlessly. I wonder if Anyone looked at me, forty years back, And thought, That'll be the life; No God any more, or sweating in the dark About hell and that, or having to hide What you think of the priest. He And his lot will all go down the long slide Like free bloody birds. And immediately Rather than words comes the thought of high windows: The sun-comprehending glass, And beyond it, the deep blue air, that shows Nothing, and is nowhere, and is endless PHILIP LARKIN Philip Larkin was 52 years old when he published his collection of poems "High Windows" in 1974. ...read more.

Middle

The word 'fucking' is not used merely for shock value, although members of Larkin's generation may have been shocked by its use, such words were more acceptable in the world of the 'couple of kids' and this places distance between the older and younger generations.. Despite Larkin's dissatisfaction with what has been allowed his era, he looks at how life has treated those who were old when he was young. I wonder if / Anyone looked at me, forty years back, / And thought, That'll be the life; / No God any more, or sweating in the dark/About hell and that Larkin seems to feel that life treats each successive generation better but that this progress is not easily seen at the time. We say to ourselves "That'll be the life" far more than we say "This is the life" and this indicates that we ultimately feel that we cannot attain what we want or even think we want. ...read more.

Conclusion

And immediately/ Rather than words comes the thought of high windows: / The sun-comprehending glass, / And beyond it, the deep blue air, that shows/ Nothing, and is nowhere, and is endless. Larkin, for the time being, abandons his usual pessimism to extol the virtue of looking forward and upward: his view of the future is one of hope that is evident in the image of "high windows", out of reach and unknown for those living in the present, and the "deep blue air" which illustrates the everlasting utopia that will be the legacy of future generations. In "High Windows" we can identify a Larkin who has long left behind his youth but who is not yet recognised as being old. Life for him may have been disappointing but he has, nonetheless, developed his observations of life and its expectations and his hopeful view looks toward the future and all its possibilities for humanity. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Larkin section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Larkin essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    Some critics suggest that Larkin portrays human existence as bleak in his poetry - ...

    4 star(s)

    It also highlights that the Landlady did not care enough about her tenants to purchase a less shabby ashtray and that the narrator and Mr Bleaney were happy to accept this degree of carelessness.

  2. A critical analysis of Philip Larkin's 'Mr Bleaney'.

    He holidays by himself and chooses not to read or travel, at least not abroad. It has been suggested that the 'hired box' is simply "a...disgusting [way in] which the male can preserve his ego".4 By buying into the 'Bleaney World' the poetic personae escapes from the outside world, especially

  1. The Whitsun Weddings" is Larkin's longest poem and describes the protagonists long, leisurely train ...

    tone and observations, the language he uses is gentle, animated and excited. Perhaps Larkin was fascinated by the fact that two completely dissimilar lives could be joined for a brief moment, by something as simple as a train ride. Although the poem might appear at a first glance to be

  2. A Critical Appreciation of Campos De Castilla

    Again, Unamuno explored this concept and Machado adopted it. What Machado describes next is a mountain bird treading on a series of herbs: "romero, tomillo, salvia" and "espliego". These herbs are again a major feature of Machado's poetry in "Campos de Castilla".

  1. By referring to at least two poems, discuss by what means Larkin illustrates the ...

    flawed as we realise the reality of the situation presented in a very unpleasant way, "the boy puking his heart out in the Gents." Essentially, reality is what all the advertisements overlook as we are left to ponder the irony of pensioners paying more for his tea, but only, "To taste old age."

  2. Larkin - a look at the mood poems were written in by Larkin

    This brings about the idea that Larkin is not arrogant. To end this part of the investigation off, I shall look at another poem called "Wild Oats". This is about two young women walking into Larkin's workplace and he looking at them in amazement.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work