Matthew Arnold’s Dover Beach


Matthew Arnold’s Dover Beach is kind of the 19th century’s nihilist version of William Carlos Williams “This Is Just To Say”. He has formulated a classic slice of sublimated spitefulness; turns a plate of your sweetest plums reduced to a pile of pits. My comments with Dover Beach focus on how he teases us with the appearance of a formal poem in various ways at various times, but really only wants to lead us on to felt trouble.