Days (poem)

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"Days" is a short poem (10 lines) by Philip Larkin, written in 1953[1] and included in his 1964 collection The Whitsun Weddings.

It begins with a section of 6 lines, opening

What are days for?
This is typical of Larkinist approach to life. All that has been compacted by Larkin in short lines is that time is passing. Days can also suggest being imprisoned in life. There is no such thing like timelessness, and sense of being entrapped in time is also there.Larkin is basically contemplating the meaning of life. While giving the reference of doctor and priest, he drops this hint that even sciene or religion cannot solve the mystery of life.
He has used brilliantly visual imagery.

in a mock-contented tone.

The final 4 lines bring a brutal reply

Ah, solving that question
Brings the priest and the doctor
In their long coats
Running over the fields.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Dunsby, Jonathan (2004). Making words sing: nineteenth- and twentieth-century song. Cambridge University Press. p. 15. ISBN 978-0-521-83661-6.
  2. ^ Glancy, Ruth F. (2002). Thematic guide to British poetry. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 255. ISBN 978-0-313-31379-0.