Summary of the poem Leisure written by William Davies for B. A. students

The Poem Leisure by William Davies

In this article, I have described the summary of the poem The Leisure which is the first poem included in the syllabus of B.Students of Punjab University. I have written this in this way if any question can be asked students can write the answer with the help of this summary. This summary also can be written in place of an explanation because I have described every stanza in one paragraph. This is one of the best summaries for B.Students of Punjab University.


This poem is about the modern man who is working as a machine day and night. Modern man has made a machine. He is working like a machine. He has no time to see beautiful natural objects surrounding him. This poem is about the materialistic approach of a modern man who has become a machine. According to the poet, man can lead a happy and successful life when he enjoys nature and spends some time with natural objects.

Leisure by William Davies is a short but very interesting poem. In this poem. In this poem,l the poet tells us the reason for worries and cares of modern man’s life has become mechanical; He has given up on the natural way of life. He does not pay attention to the beauty of nature I simple objects of nature. He has become a slave of his desires. His desires keep him so busy that he cannot spare time for recreation. He misses many simple delights in everyday life. It is, according to the poet, the biggest curse of modern life.

The poet says that this life is meaningless if it is full of worries and cares. We, the people of the modern era, do not pay attention to the beauty of nature. Even animals like sheep and cows are superior to us in this respect. They spend much time in the company of nature. When we pass through a jungle, we do not look at the innocent squirrels that hide their nuts in the grass. 

We are so busy in monetary pursuits that we fail to feel the similarity in the night sky and stream in broad daylight. The poet makes use of personification. It is the presentation of an abstract idea in the form of a human being. The poet personifies Beauty. He says that we do not pay attention even if the goddess of beauty comes across us. We show no interest in her attractive dance of charming smile. the poet declares that this life is very poor if it is full of worries and care.

At the end of the poem, the poet laments the life of modern man. He says that if a man's life is full of care and attention, this type of life is useless. According to the poet natural object has healing power, we can get energy from them. If the modern man does not enjoy natural beauty, he is leading a poor and useless life. 

Reference to the Context


What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare?—

No time to stand beneath the boughs,
And stare as long as sheep and cows:



These lines have been taken from the Poem "The Leisure" written by W.H. Davies.


In this poem, the poet laments about man's busy life. He says that man has become a machine. He is busy working day and night for making money. He is indulged in materialistic affairs that he completely misses some simple delights. we have a lot of natural objects scattered around us but we have no time to see them. The poet says that man is superior to all other creatures but he has become inferior to animals because of his materialistic approach. The animals have time to see natural beauty but the man who claims that he is superior to other creatures has no time to see natural beauty and enjoy them.


The poet laments the rushed and hurried manner in which the modern man spends his life devoted to material pursuits depriving himself of the beauty and simple delights that life offers. There is no use in such life if we do not have spare time to come out of our material cocoons and spend some time looking closely at the natural objects around us. We do not have time to stand in the cool and soothing shade of trees and look at the beauty spread around us everywhere in nature. We do not have much time to feast our eyes on the beautiful phenomenon of nature and in this way the pure and simple delights in life.

Stanza 2

No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass:

No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night:



We are so busy with material activities that we miss the delightful activities of natural creatures owing to a lack of time. even if we get some time to pass through forests and jungles where nature is present in its nakedness we do not see the natural creatures busy in their activities. In a rushed and hurried manner, we miss the delightful activity of squirrels finding and hiding the grains in the forests. We do not spare some time during the day in the afternoon to see what a beautiful spectacle the rays of the sun are creating in the streams of crystal-clear water. Thousands of stars seem to twinkle the streams in the broad sunlight as the sky is full of stars at night.

Stanza 3

No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance:

No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began?




In these four lines, the poet makes the use of personification which means giving the living character of persons to in-animate and other than human beings things of nature. here the poet personifies nature with a beautiful young girl. The dancing character of different objects of nature such as dancing waves of rivers, lakes oceans, dancing branches of trees, dancing crops, etc. Is personified by the dance of a beautiful young girl who is busy dancing in a rhythmic and beautiful style but owing to the lack of time, we do not stop to watch this dance. Nest the poet suggests that nature smiles and attracts human beings toward it but we are so preoccupied with our lives that we do not wait for the smile to please us by enriching our lives. The smiling nature is personified by the smiling young woman.

Stanza 4

A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.


In the end, the poet emphasizes his basic idea and says that there is no value in this life if it is full of cares and worries and is without the availability of time for relishing the various delights of life and the beauty of nature. The poet is against the mechanical routine of modern man's life and feels that life must be relished in a leisurely manner.

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