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Poetry Analysis On Elliot Essay, Research Paper
The love song
It is an examination of the pitiful outcast of a modern man–overeducated, well-spoken, irrational, and emotionally awkward. Prufrock, the poem’s speaker, seems to be addressing a potential lover, with whom he would like to “force the moment to its crisis” by somehow fixing their relationship. But Prufrock knows too much of life to “dare” an approach to the woman: In his mind he hears the comments others make about his superiority, and he reminds himself that “presuming” emotional interaction could be possible. The poem moves from a series of fairly definite physical settings–a cityscape (the famous “patient etherised upon a table”) and several interiors (women’s arms in the lamplight, coffee spoons, fireplaces)–to a series of hazy ocean images carrying Prufrock’s emotional distance from the world as he comes to recognize that maybe he is not as superior that he once thought. “Prufrock” is powerful for its range of intellectual reference and also for the loudness of character achieved.
In the world Prufrock describes that no sympathetic figure exists, and he must, therefore, be content with silent reflection. In its focus on character and its dramatic delicacy, “Prufrock” anticipates Eliot’s later dramatic works.
The rhyme situated in different stanzas throughout the poem is far from random. While sections of the poem may resemble free verse, in reality, “Prufrock” is a carefully structured mixture of poetic forms. One of the most prominent formal characteristics of this work is the use of theme. Prufrock’s continual referal to the “women [who] come and go / Talking of Michelangelo” and his constant questionings (”how should I presume?”) and cynical appraisals (”That is not it, at all.”) these lines help Eliot describe the consciousness of a modern, unstable individual.
The kinds of imagery Eliot uses also suggest that something new can be made from the ruins: The series of indefinite encounters at the poem’s center reiterate and are muddled but nevertheless lead to a sort of epiphany (albeit a dark one) rather than just leading nowhere.
.” Crabs are scavengers, garbage-eaters who live off refuse that makes its way to the sea floor. Eliot’s discussions of his own poetic technique suggest that making something beautiful out of the waste of modern life, as a crab sustains and nourishes itself on garbage, may, in fact, be the highest form of art.
The dry salvages
The word “salvages in a note to the poem says it is pronounced in a particular way so it will rhyme with “assuages”. The Dry Salvages are a group of small, rocky islands with a lighthouse off the coast of Massachusetts.
The first section of “The Dry Salvages” makes an plain comparison between a river and the sea as models for the mysterious. A river, while it may show prominently in human mythologies, it is something that can eventually be crossed and conquered. In elliots poem, the sea represents an endless reserve of depths and mysteries: Man can live with the ocean but he will never master it. The second section of the poem seems to signify a reconciliation with the human lot. The sea will never be either a blank slate, “there is no end of it,” and man must always keep working in good faith.
The third section of the poem contemplates on words aimed to Krishna, advising humanity not to “fare well” but to “fare forward.” This is an appeal to give up aspirations–to stop seeking to do “well”–and to be satisfied with how you are.
The fourth section is a prayer to Mary, figured as a statue watching over the sea, asking her to pray for those who travel on the sea and those who wait for them at home.
“The Dry Salvages” at last offers something akin to hope. While man will always strive to do his best,” everyday existence nevertheless contains moments of only half-noticed grace–moments at which “you are the music keep it going While the music lasts.”
In this poem T.S. Elliot effectively lightens the tone. The poem also makes use of extended “landscapes”–the river and the sea– that allow Eliot to engage in flights of descriptive language. The Dry Salvages” is interrupted at least twice by the ringing of a bell. In both cases it is a bell at sea, either on a ship or on a buoy. The bell is a human interference that is meant to highlight the complexity and enormity of the sea and this symbolizes that ringing a bell will not disrupt the sea, nothing man can do will phase it.Perhaps the most famous part of this poem is its opening, with the description of the river as “a strong brown god.” Eliot is possibly symbolically representing the river to the status of a false god, by pointing out its inability to compete with the sea.
The little gidding
The first section describes a sunny winter’s day, where everything is dead yet blazing with the sun’s fire. The second section begins with a lyric on the death of the four elements (air, earth, water, and fire) that have figured so prominently in the previous quartets. The scene then shifts to the poet walking at dawn. He meets the ghost of some former master, whom he does not quite recognize. The two speak, and the ghost gives the poet the burdens of wisdom. The spirit tells him that only if he is “restored by …refining fire” will he escape these curses. In the third section, the poet declares that attachment, detachment, and indifference are all related. The second part of this section declare that, despite this, “all shall be well.” As the poet thinks on the people who have come to Little Gidding seeking spiritual renewal and peace, he realizes that the dead have left us only “a symbol,”. The fourth section is a two-stanza piece describing first a dove with a tongue of fire, which purifies and destroys; the second stanza then considers love as the chief torment of man. The final section of the poem brings the spiritual and the elegant together in a final reconciliation. Perfect language results in poetry in which every word and every phrase is “an end and a beginning.”. All will be well when the fire and the rose become one.
Fire and roses are the main images of this poem. Both have a double meaning. Roses, a traditional symbol of English royalty, represent all of England, but they also are made to stand for divine love, mercy, and the garden where the children in “Burnt Norton” hide (they reappear at the end of this poem). Fire is both the flame of divine harshness and the spiritual ether capable of purifying the human soul and bringing understanding. The series of double images creates a strong sense of paradox: Just as one seemingly they cannot be purified destroyed at the same time.
The paradox present in elliots work leads to the creation of an alternative world of spiritual and abnormal figures. The dead, with their words “tongued with fire,” offer an alternative for the poet seeking to escape the restriction of reality. By going to a place “where prayer has been valid,” Eliot suggests that imagination and a little faith can conquer the restrictions placed upon man . This poem, finally, celebrates the ability of human vision to rise above the current limitations of human destruction.
The first section combines a opinion on time: that the past and the future are always in the present: with a description of a rose garden where children hide, laughing. A bird serves as the poet’s guide, bringing him into the garden, showing him around, and saving him from despair at not being able to reach the laughing children. The second section begins with a sort of song, filled with abstract images of a different technique. The poem shifts midway through the section, where it again assumes a more mellow tone in order to sort out the differences between awareness and living in time. The third section of “Burnt Norton” feels like a song, in which the key changes. In this section, Eliot describes a “place of disaffection” maybe he means the everyday world–which allows neither “darkness” nor the beauty of the moment (”daylight”). The fourth, very short section returns to a sort of melody with ryme involved. The final section of this poem returns to reality: Despite the apparent spirit of words and music, these must die; the children’s laughter in the garden becomes a mocking laughter, insulting our addiction to time.
The garden in which the first section is set is Certainly the garden–”our first world”, the Garden of Eden: A place of peace that no one will ever experience and that is normally forbidden to humans but that exists in memory and in literature. Yet the garden is also a part of the ruined estate from which this poem takes its name; it endures the marks of human presence. The wreck of the garden brings to mind that ruins are a symbol of the hollowness of human goals and particularly of the ill hope of trying to alter the natural order.
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