Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Editions can help.
Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Editions can help.

Crossing the Bar Summary & Analysis
by Alfred Lord Tennyson

Question about this poem?
Have a question about this poem?
Have a specific question about this poem?
Have a specific question about this poem?
Have a specific question about this poem?
A LitCharts expert can help.
A LitCharts expert can help.
A LitCharts expert can help.
A LitCharts expert can help.
A LitCharts expert can help.
Ask us
Ask us
Ask a question
Ask a question
Ask a question

"Crossing the Bar" is a poem by the British Victorian poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson. The poem, written in 1889, is a metaphorical meditation on death, which sees the speaker comparing dying—or a certain way of dying—to gently crossing the sandbar between a coastal area and the wider sea/ocean. In essence, it is a poem that argues that death is in fact a kind of comfort, a point of view based on the speaker's religious faith in the afterlife. Accordingly, the speaker wants to die quietly and gently, without fear, reassured by the knowledge that what comes next is a meeting with God. "Crossing the Bar" was written shortly before Tennyson's own death, and is the poem that Tennyson wanted placed at the end of all future collections and editions of his poetry.

Get
Get
LitCharts
Get the entire guide to “Crossing the Bar” as a printable PDF.
Download