So early it’s still almost dark out.
I’m near the window with coffee,
and the usual early morning stuff
that passes for thought.

When I see the boy and his friend
walking up the road
to deliver the newspaper.

They wear caps and sweaters,
and one boy has a bag over his shoulder.
They are so happy
they aren’t saying anything, these boys.

I think if they could, they would take
each other’s arm.
It’s early in the morning,
and they are doing this thing together.

They come on, slowly.
The sky is taking on light,
though the moon still hangs pale over the water.

Such beauty that for a minute
death and ambition, even love,
doesn’t enter into this.

Happiness. It comes on
unexpectedly. And goes beyond, really,
any early morning talk about it.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Raymond Carver's poem Happiness


  1. jasmine says:

    i really like this poem.
    it’s simple yet so inspiring…
    for me, it talks about a breath of fresh air from the fast life that most people are leading now. it’s like telling the people to stop, look, and appreciate. that even in our mundane and sometimes routinely life, little things are important too, sometimes just as important as big things, because these little things are truly what matters in finding happiness.
    well, that’s my interpretation 🙂

  2. mai ahmed says:

    this poem is good

  3. robert says:

    In response to Danny boy I don’t agree that you have to have compassion or intellect to enjoy writing and you may have compassion and intellect too and not enjoy writing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Do you have any comments, criticism, paraphrasis or analysis of this poem that you feel would assist other visitors in understanding the meaning or the theme of this poem by Raymond Carver better? If accepted, your analysis will be added to this page of American Poems. Together we can build a wealth of information, but it will take some discipline and determination.