RICHARD ALAN BUNCH : The Saying
PAUL THOMSON : Modern-Day Anxieties in T. S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock"
KATHLEEN O'HARA PODZIMEK : Daddy
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The Saying Modern-Day Anxieties in T. S. Eliot's Daddy  
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RICHARD ALAN BUNCH
The Saying
What is not said or lined between the covers--- the flurries of form through sutures of thighs, seas tidepooled in mountains, nuclei that sway blue-hot raindrops, praise beyond a mission of similes--- these are the saying-nots, talented blanks that discern invisible planets, blow out of glass an angel, craft out of the holy, galaxies.
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The Saying Modern-Day Anxieties in T. S. Eliot's Daddy  
POETRY requires a mature audience ENTER only if you are 18+ under 18? GoTo Games
PAUL THOMSON
Modern-Day Anxieties in T. S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock"

"The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" is one of those poems that can seem horribly sad one day, and incredibly absurd the next. Written by T. S. Eliot and published in 1915, it addresses the themes of isolation, industrialized cities, and great unease with the world. You might have encountered this in a unit on poetry, and like many students, you might not have been impressed by its long-windedness. For all its over-the-top wallowing around, though, there is a lot in the poem that speaks to anxieties we have today.

The speaker, Prufrock (whoever he might be) spends a lot of time worrying about growing old. He will “have a bald spot in the middle of [his] hair,” and then, behind his back, “They will say: ‘How his hair is growing thin!’” Poor Prufrock – he’s got a bit of a self-esteem issue, and seems to feel like he’ll be losing something of himself when he loses his hair, not because of how it will make him feel, but because of how other people will see him. Have you ever heard of botox? It’s a different solution to the same problem.

”The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” also expresses anxiety about what really MATTers in the world. One of the poem’s most famous lines is, “In the room the women come and go / Talking of Michelangelo.” Something about the women’s back and forth movement suggests that they’re just kind of milling around, and aren’t doing anything particularly important. What about Michelangelo, then? Is he important? This stanza, repeated several times throughout the poem, seems to be also asking whether art MATTers, if it’s just reviewed and talked about in a shallow way. We don’t think Eliot’s trying to hate on art – after all, he’s all about filling his work up with illusions to other works (see “The Waste Land”), and it seems unlikely that he’d attempt this poem if it was all meaningless. However, it’s kind of sad to think of Michelangelo as just a buzzword, being passed around by some random women with nothing better to do.

Prufrock is also worried about something we hear about all too often these days: pollution. That yellow fog, catlike and almost fluffy, probably wouldn’t be as cuddly as it might seem. Fog itself is nothing special, but yellow is a strange color for it to be. If you’re not sold on the idea that the fog has been turned yellow from pollution (maybe it’s just yellow from streetlights?), at least take a close look at the “soot that falls from chimneys.” There’s something falling from the sky that’s not rain, which seems ominous, not to mention bad for your asthma. You try going to sleep at night feeling like a big cloud of pollution has just curled up softly around your house.

This is characteristically modernist poetry, and worth a second look if it left a bad taste in your mouth in school. It’s easy to dismiss Prufrock as a pathetic guy who doesn’t have the guts to deal with his own life, but the poem gets easier to understand if you recognize that some of the things he worries about, you worry about, too.

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Poetry endangers the established order  of the soul - Plato





The Saying Modern-Day Anxieties in T. S. Eliot's Daddy  
POETRY requires a mature audience ENTER only if you are 18+ under 18? GoTo Games

KATHLEEN O'HARA PODZIMEK
Daddy
You held my body, teaching me words, pictures, and rhymes, "Did you ever think you'd see me like this?" You were confident, dominant, you were larger-than-life "Did you ever think you'd see me like this?" When Mom died, you grew smaller, sadder, I saw it in your eyes, felt it in your shoulders, "Did you ever think you'd see me like this?" You couldn't walk, couldn't hear, You asked, "Did you every think you'd see me like this? "No," I lied. "I never thought I'd see you like this." Death took you crying, I asked my husband, "Did you ever think you'd see me like this?" "No," he lied, "I never thought I'd see you like this."
POETRYREPAIRS 11.03: 033
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The SayingTOP The Saying © RICHARD ALAN BUNCH. JH a poem about omission/s as objects. Omission also includes those moments we are separated from others. see also IRONY 033poemQ2MID 033poemQ2 © PAUL THOMSON .comment2 033poemQ2BTM Daddy © KATHLEEN O'HARA PODZIMEK . from poetryrepairs 01.03:34
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