This poem is written in free verse. Like all of MacCaig’s poetry, the themes and central ideas are readily accessible through conversational style and simple language.
Written from a first person stance in the past tense, the poem is divided by stanzas into three main sections:
The fluidity and looseness of the structure also helps to reinforce the key message of the poem which focuses on death and the grieving process.
Death of a loved one itself represents a formlessness, a loss of structure, the disintegration of close bonds of love and affection. Hence the poet reflects on this in the way he constructs the poem.