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Night Mail (poem) with explaination

This poem is written by W.H.Auden.

About Author ( W.H.Auden)


W.H.Auden (Poet)















W.H Audin was born on 21 february 1907.He was M.A English . He lived in Newyork city of America. His father was a medical officer in school.He read English literature in Christchurch oxford. He wanted to become a mining engineer. But in the age of 13 he stared to write poems in school time. He published his first poetry book in 1930. He was also a very good tutor and teacher.He became a teacher in boys school for five years .All students liked and loved him . 
He was the best teacher.He also taught English in University of Michigan. He was the professor of poetry in Oxford university. Three times in a year he went there.He also got many awards as Guggenhein fellowship awrard. 
 He won fame in social and political circles.
Auden showed a deep interest in language and metaphor,satire and parody which are dazzling and sometimes cruel.He is lively and provocative,,skilled and igneous.

He had keenly interested in writing Opera librettos. He expressed his feelings through it . He was also a writer of prose essays and reviews on literary, political, psychological and religious subjects. He worked at various documentary films and poetic plays. He was died on 29 september 1973.

Night Mail (poem)


This is the night mail crossing the Border, 
Bringing the cheque and the postal order, 
Letters for the rich, letters for the poor, 
The shop at the corner, the girl next door.
  Pulling up Beattock, a steady climb:
 The gradient's against her, but she's on time.
 Past cotton-grass and moorland boulder
 Shovelling white steam over her shoulder,
 Snorting noisily as she passes 
Silent miles of wind-bent grasses. 
Birds turn their heads as she approaches,
 Stare from bushes at her blank-faced coaches. 
Sheep-dogs cannot turn her course;
 They slumber on with paws across.
 In the farm she passes no one wakes,
 But a jug in a bedroom gently shakes.

  Dawn freshens, Her climb is done.
 Down towards Glasgow she descends,
 Towards the steam tugs yelping down a glade of cranes 
Towards the fields of apparatus, the furnaces 
Set on the dark plain like gigantic chessmen.
 All Scotland waits for her: 
In dark glens, beside pale-green lochs
 Men long for news.

 Letters of thanks, letters from banks, 
Letters of joy from girl and boy, 
Receipted bills and invitations 
To inspect new stock or to visit relations, 
And applications for situations,
 And timid lovers' declarations, 
And gossip, gossip from all the nations,
 News circumstantial, news financial, 
Letters with holiday snaps to enlarge in, 
Letters with faces scrawled on the margin,
 Letters from uncles, cousins, and aunts, 
Letters to Scotland from the South of France,
 Letters of condolence to Highlands and Lowlands 
Written on paper of every hue,
 The pink, the violet, the white and the blue, 
The chatty, the catty, the boring, the adoring, 
The cold and official and the heart's outpouring,
 Clever, stupid, short and long,
 The typed and the printed and the spelt all wrong. 

 Thousands are still asleep, 
Dreaming of terrifying monsters
 Or of friendly tea beside the band in Cranston's or Crawford's
 Asleep in working Glasgow, asleep in well-set Edinburgh, 
Asleep in granite Aberdeen, 
They continue their dreams, 
But shall wake soon and hope for letters, 
And none will hear the postman's knock
 Without a quickening of the heart,
 For who can bear to feel himself forgotten? 

Explaination of poem ( The Night Mail)


This is a simple poem highlighting the various characteristics of a night mail. It brings various types of postal material for each kind of people. It also passes through various fields, meadows, and ups and downs to reach its destiny. Night mail actually resembles life that passes through different courses to reach its destiny. "The Night Mail" brings different kinds of postal material. It passes through different ups and downs. 
Nobody can alter its course. It reaches its destiny in time. When it passes, nothing moves but only a jug lying on a table moves slightly.The Night Mail is the train that travels at night and carries mail. It is night. 
The Night Mail is running towards its destination. It is bringing mail containing cheques, postal orders, ordinary letters, business letters, and love letters etc. It serves the rich and the poor at the same time. it helps to promote business and relations. It establishes communication between people living in different parts of the country. 
Whatever the weather 't is, it does its job. People are waiting for their mail. The shopkeeper is anxious about his cheque or Postal order. The next door girl is waiting for her love letter. It has to reach its destination on time. Nobody can alter its course. It reaches its destiny in time. When it passes, nothing moves but only a jug lying on a table moves slightly. 
The Night Mail stops at certain stations. Then, after a short while, it moves again and travels on a steady climb. It travels on upward and downward slopes, but it does not get late. It reaches its destinations on time. It passes by grassy fields and uncultivated treeless stretch of land. It passes by a large round rock. The poet teaches us that a man, like a train, sees different periods of life. He has to face hard days. 
He also enjoys pleasures of life. Whatever the circumstances are, like a train, he should be regular, punctual and sturdy. He should do his duty earnestly. It will bring him success arid fame. The birds look at her plain coaches from the bushes. It continues its journey. It has to travel on a fixed path. It has no time to stand and stare. The sheepdogs Know that they cannot force the train to change its direction by barking at it or by running after it. So they sleeping calmly with their paws crossed. 
The Night Mail carries mail for people of different villages, towns and cities. So it is welcome everywhere. We can say that it does not create any problem for the people. Instead of it, it helps the people.the night mail brings letters also for the next-door girl who is perhaps, waiting for the letters of her lover anxiously. 
When the birds sitting in the bushes hear the sound of the train they become attentive. They move their heads towards it and start looking at its coaches.
 A train is a nonliving thing. The poet regards it as a living thing. This is called personification and the nonliving thing described as a living thing is called personified. In this poem, the Night Mail is personified by using words like, snorting noisily, etc. In this way the poet change a lifeless thing into a living one. The Night Mail passes through many high and low areas. It passes by moorland boulder and the fields of cotton.

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  1. not very interesting and in depth explanation( even your spellings of Explanations are those of quotidian students.nothing important has been explained. \no information of any significance has been afforded. Disappointing

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    1. This means you have a better explanation. Why dont you write on a comment...?

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  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  3. What a rubbish explanation of a wonderful poem - who are you a seven year old????

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