“The lark will make her hymn”

The Light that Failed


(Notes by Geoffrey Annis)


This eight-line poem heads chapter XI of The Light that Failed. It is collected as a ‘Chapter Heading’ in Definitive Verse, in Songs from Books without a title. In The Light that Failed (p. 180) Kipling attributes to The Only Son. He later used that title for the different verse which heads the story “In The Rukh” (Many Inventions 1893).

The poem

These lines  draw on imagery from hunting and the English countryside, to comment on Dick’s blindness, and his alienation from his past.

dule (lines 5 and 6) means ‘woeful’.



©Geoffrey Annis 2020 All rights reserved