Philip Larkin’s This Be The Verse

The Times has a nice article on Philip Larkin’s famous poem, ‘This Be The Verse’. You know the one, the rude one. It goes like this:

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.

They may not mean to but they do.

They fill you with the faults they had,

And add some extra, just for you.

But they were fucked up in their turn,

By fools in old-style hats and coats,

Who half the time were soppy-stern,

And half at one another’s throats.

Man hands on misery to man.

It deepens like a coastal shelf.

Get out as early as you can,

And don’t have any kids yourself.

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