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What is the Central Idea of the Poem The Retreat?

What is the Central Idea of the Poem The Retreat?

1 Answer

  1. Henry Vaughan’s poem “The Retreat” talks about a speaker’s wish to return to a more innocent, happier time in his past. The speaker laments the passing of his boyhood in the opening lines of the poem. He yearns for a period when he was still in his “angel infancy” and had not yet been shaped by the evil forces of the world. It would be a period when he had not yet left his house or become aware of the internal conflict that would consume him. He is concerned right now with his own feelings and his wicked character. In a way that was not even considered when he was younger, he is concerned about his own well-being. The speaker narrates how his life will come to an end and how he will return to the earth’s dust in the poem’s last lines. This will be the man’s penultimate conclusion in his search for his former life.


    The Retreat Summary 

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