Poet and philosopher Archibald Lampman (1861-1899)
led not a life of his own, but an existance forced upon him by peers and an
unfeeling and cold society. Dying far before his time, Lampman led a life
of misery. He was supported only by a few close friends and his immortal poetry.
This essay is founded around one particular of his works but I feel it
necessary to discuss the conditions in which he lived in order to fully
understand what he was trying to express and/or symbolize.

Lampman really hated his day to day life, he lived only for his friends and
his works. Trapped in a city for which he had no love, he often reflected
his loathing of it in his numerous works situated in cities. A lover of
nature, Lampmans poems often immediately assumed a tone of life, mirth,
and a feeling of pleasure and warmth; the others formed a picture of death,
hell, and hate all held together by the one problem that is always present,
Man.

With few close friends like Duncan Campell Scott, and other that were poetically
inclinded, Lampman formed a group through-out collage that met frequently
to write and discuss. Close friends like that influenced him to write such
popular pieces as "Heat" and "A sunset at Les Eboulements" and yet in his
darkest moments we get the main topic of this essay "The City of The End of Things".
Like most great poets, Lampmans moods and feelings had a direct effect on the
nature and topic of his poetry. Lampman chief poetry was done after a great
joy in his life, or a great sadness. Sadly, Archibald was not a rich man
and lived not a happy life, and most of his poetry reflects that.
"The City of The End of Things" was written in a time of great sadness and hate
for the world. Published one year after his death many people fail to realize
the direct connection to themselves in the poem.

Lampmans poetry was divided into two moods, saddness and joy, each primarly
involed with nature or cities. Let us discuss the tools used in "The City of The End of Things".
Dubed "The Apocalypic City" by Many experts, these mutations of the
apocalypic city shows how much Lampmans visions shifted with his moods. He
was passionatly committed to social change, but in extreme he identified
redemption with paralyzed oblivion (N.G Guthrie)

The infernal features of the City are so many inversions of the values that
Lampmans saw in natural landscape. Its roaring furnaces, its "ceaseless round"
of mechanical action, and its "inhuman music" are the demonic counterparts
of the sun imagery, the seasonal cycles and the hymm of nature in "Heat"
are gone, this poem focuses on the specters who preside over the dammed cities
decline.

But now of that prodigious race,
Three only in an iron tower,
Set like carved idols face to face,
Remain the master of its power\'
And at the city gate a fourth,
Gigantic and with dreadful eyes,
Sits looking toward the lightless north,
Beyond the reach of memories,
Fast rooted to the lurid floor
A bulk that never moves a jot,
In his pale body dwells no more
Or mind or soul,--an idiot!

I take this strange group to mean two things: a divorce of intellect
and coporeality, to the corruption or both; and a division of society\'s
destructive implications for individuals and societies alike.

It hath no name that rings;
But I have heard it called in dreams
The City of The End of Things

When the poet sayshe hears of the city "in dreams", he
is suggesting that the imagination that shapes our lives has gone awry.
The city is a projection fo current impulises (to that time).
"Its roofs and iron towers have grown/None knowth how high within the night,
shrowed in darkness, this shows death fulmost grasp on the city and its
former hosts. The tower, mentioned three times in the poem, is its most
preminent symbol. As an image of pride mocked by a ghasty claim it has
overtones of Babil, but it could have other meanings. In Romantic
poems, towers symbolize the human consciousnes, which becomes a fortress
and a