Thomas B. Byers: On "Sun and Rain"
In "Sun and Rain," the flow of animals and the coming of rain figure the speaker's flood of emotion as he recalls the day his mother
... told me of seeing my father alive for the last time and he waved her back f rom the door as she was leaving took her hand for a while and said nothing
The combination of the father's beckoning gesture (which requires the opening of his hand) with his silence makes the scene doubly poignant; the dying man at once reveals his dependence and love and, in a nonfulfillment of the moment, is unable to articulate them. Given the emphatic position of "nothing," there is a hint that this inability manifests a general failure of character, yet this hint supplements, rather than canceling, the pathos of the gesture and the situation.
|Title||Thomas B. Byers: On "Sun and Rain"||Type of Content||Criticism|
|Criticism Author||Thomas B. Byers||Criticism Target||W. S. Merwin|
|Criticism Type||Poet||Originally Posted||30 May 2020|
|Publication Status||Excerpted Criticism||Publication||What I Cannot Say: Self, Word, and World in Whitman, Stevens, and Merwin|
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|Contexts||No Data||Tags||No Data|