Larkin’s final collection of poems shows, as does all his best work, his ability to adapt contemporary speech rhythms and everyday vocabulary to subtle metrical patterns and poetic forms. Many of the poems in the collection, which includes some of his best-known pieces (‘The Old Fools’, ‘This Be the Verse’, ‘The Explosion’, and the title poem) show the preoccupation with death and transience that is so typical of the poet.
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.
from ‘High Windows’