Quite unexpectedly, as Vasserot
The armless ambidextrian was lighting
A match between his great and second toe,
And Ralph the lion was engaged in biting
The neck of Madame Sossman while the drum
Pointed, and Teeny was about to cough
In waltz-time swinging Jocko by the thumb—
Quite unexpectedly the top blew off:

And there, there overhead, there, there hung over
Those thousands of white faces, those dazed eyes,
There in the starless dark the poise, the hover,
There with vast wings across the cancelled skies,
There in the sudden blackness the black pall
Of nothing, nothing, nothing — nothing at all.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Archibald MacLeish's poem The End Of The World


  1. Ezekiel Blackbear says:

    A great metaphor for the elites and the absurdity of what they have created is Archibald Macleish’s (poet laureate of the Skull and Bones) poem, “The End of the World”. A better title would have been, “The End of Our World”

  2. Sabrina says:

    i lover this peom that i recited it to my class and did great. Poeple think life will be forever but it wont and all good things will come to an end.

  3. Marisa Samuels says:

    I first read this poem when I was a small child. I thought then, and think now, that the world will end precisely in the way MacLeish describes — a sudden nothingness.

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