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Windy Nights - Summary

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An Introduction to the Poem

A Child's Garden of Verses, Robert Louis Stevenson's, one of the most influential collections of poetry comprises the poem ‘Windy Nights’. This lovely poetry captures the heart and makes us wonder about the identity of the horse rider. Is it a character from a fairy tale or a creation of a child's imagination? The answer is clear. It could be the personification of a stormy wind or something unseen. Whatever the case may be, Stevenson's simple rhyme describing a night scene during a violent storm makes us think deeply.

Let us look at the theme of the poem and poem in the coming sections.

The Theme of the Poem

The poem's title, ‘Windy Nights’, is a reference to the poem's major topic. Stevenson gives an indication of the subject matter in the title. A stormy night scene is all about it. It does not, however, help readers in digging further into the text. To get the entire message, one must delve further within the lines. They will discover a world full of mystery and signs if they do so.

The unexpected appearance of a horse rider makes one wonder about his identity. The rider, however, is shown to be a personified representation of the violent wind after reading the text. It could also be a mysterious figure, an imaginary character from a child's fantasy.

The Poem: Windy Nights

Let us look at the poem here.

Whenever the moon and stars are set,

Whenever the wind is high,

All night long in the dark and wet,

A man goes riding by.

Late in the night when the fires are out,

Why does he gallop and gallop about?

Whenever the trees are crying aloud,

And ships are tossed at sea,

By, on the highway, low and loud,

By at the gallop goes he.

By at the gallop he goes, and then

By he comes back at the gallop again.

A Windy Night

A Windy Night


‘Windy Nights’ is a poem about a universal vision of nature before a storm. Stevenson describes how the moon and stars are hidden behind clouds at night. The poetic persona (representing a youngster) can hear a man riding by, while the wind is strong and the rain is constant. He rages with his horse against the night's darkness.

The second stanza describes the stormy night picture. The storm topples trees and throws ships at sea, as described by Stevenson. On the highway, though, the rider continues. He leaves and returns at the gallop in the same manner.

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FAQs on Windy Nights - Summary

1. What is the poem ‘Windy Nights’ all about?

The poem ‘Windy Nights’ by Robert Louis Stevenson is about a night storm. The poet explains how a child imagines the storm as a horse rider in this poem. He believes this because of the storm's sound.

2. Who is the poet of the poem ‘Windy Nights’?

Robert Louis Stevenson wrote the poem Windy Nights, which is considered one of the most significant collections of poetry. This poem has a beautiful rhyming effect and is a wonderful form of poetry. It makes the readers think about the identity of the horse rider and enjoy the poem.