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    T S Eliot General


    Posts : 9
    Join date : 2012-04-21

    T S Eliot General

    Post  Tamburlaine on Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:50 am

    One of my all-time favourite writers ever. His poetry's great, his criticism's interesting (even if he does diss out Milton), and his politics totally crazy: a potent mix. I think he's probably the most recent poet who people will talk about being 'great'.

    Some of my favourite of his verse is in The Waste Land:

    The Chair she sat in, like a burnished throne,
    Glowed on the marble, where the glass
    Held up by standards wrought with fruited vines
    From which a golden Cupidon peeped out 80
    (Another hid his eyes behind his wing)
    Doubled the flames of sevenbranched candelabra
    Reflecting light upon the table as
    The glitter of her jewels rose to meet it,
    From satin cases poured in rich profusion; 85
    In vials of ivory and coloured glass
    Unstoppered, lurked her strange synthetic perfumes,
    Unguent, powdered, or liquid—troubled, confused
    And drowned the sense in odours; stirred by the air
    That freshened from the window, these ascended 90
    In fattening the prolonged candle-flames,
    Flung their smoke into the laquearia,
    Stirring the pattern on the coffered ceiling.
    Huge sea-wood fed with copper
    Burned green and orange, framed by the coloured stone, 95
    In which sad light a carvèd dolphin swam.
    Above the antique mantel was displayed
    As though a window gave upon the sylvan scene
    The change of Philomel, by the barbarous king
    So rudely forced; yet there the nightingale 100
    Filled all the desert with inviolable voice
    And still she cried, and still the world pursues,
    “Jug Jug” to dirty ears.
    And other withered stumps of time
    Were told upon the walls; staring forms 105
    Leaned out, leaning, hushing the room enclosed.
    Footsteps shuffled on the stair,
    Under the firelight, under the brush, her hair
    Spread out in fiery points
    Glowed into words, then would be savagely still. 110

    What do you think of him? Haven't read him? Wish you hadn't? Want to be the next him?

    Posts : 18
    Join date : 2012-04-21
    Location : Dublin

    Re: T S Eliot General

    Post  Fergus on Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:53 am

    I studied him in secondary school and fell in love with his poetry. Prufrock, Preludes, The Waste Land; it's all good. I particularly liked the first section of Preludes though.

    The winter evening settles down
    With smell of steaks in passageways.
    Six o’clock.
    The burnt-out ends of smoky days.
    And now a gusty shower wraps
    The grimy scraps
    Of withered leaves about your feet
    And newspapers from vacant lots;
    The showers beat
    On broken blinds and chimney-pots,
    And at the corner of the street
    A lonely cab-horse steams and stamps.

    And then the lighting of the lamps.

    My favourite section of The Waste Land actually begins right where yours cuts off.

    “My nerves are bad to-night. Yes, bad. Stay with me.
    Speak to me. Why do you never speak? Speak.
    What are you thinking of? What thinking? What?
    I never know what you are thinking. Think.”

    I think we are in rats’ alley
    Where the dead men lost their bones.

    “What is that noise?”
    The wind under the door.
    “What is that noise now? What is the wind doing?”
    Nothing again nothing.
    You know nothing? Do you see nothing? Do you remember
    I remember
    Those are pearls that were his eyes.
    “Are you alive, or not? Is there nothing in your head?”
    O O O O that Shakespeherian Rag—
    It’s so elegant
    So intelligent

    “What shall I do now? What shall I do?
    I shall rush out as I am, and walk the street
    With my hair down, so. What shall we do to-morrow?
    What shall we ever do?”
    The hot water at ten.
    And if it rains, a closed car at four.
    And we shall play a game of chess,
    Pressing lidless eyes and waiting for a knock upon the door.

    I've never read any of his criticism though, I'll have to give it a look.

    Posts : 49
    Join date : 2012-04-21

    Re: T S Eliot General

    Post  perkunas on Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:50 am

    I love The Waste Land, T.S. Eliot is quickly becoming one of my favorite poets. There's something about his writing style that carries with it this kind of spellbound vibe, it almost reminds me of Walt Whitman (in a rather indirect way).

    This has always seemed like the climax of it to me:

    At the violet hour, when the eyes and back
    Turn upward from the desk, when the human engine waits
    Like a taxi throbbing waiting,
    I Tiresias, though blind, throbbing between two lives,
    Old man with wrinkled female breasts, can see
    At the violet hour, the evening hour that strives 220
    Homeward, and brings the sailor home from sea,
    The typist home at teatime, clears her breakfast, lights
    Her stove, and lays out food in tins.
    Out of the window perilously spread
    Her drying combinations touched by the sun's last rays,
    On the divan are piled (at night her bed)
    Stockings, slippers, camisoles, and stays.
    I Tiresias, old man with wrinkled dugs
    Perceived the scene, and foretold the rest -
    I too awaited the expected guest. 230
    He, the young man carbuncular, arrives,
    A small house agent's clerk, with one bold stare,
    One of the low on whom assurance sits
    As a silk hat on a Bradford millionaire.
    The time is now propitious, as he guesses,
    The meal is ended, she is bored and tired,
    Endeavours to engage her in caresses
    Which still are unreproved, if undesired.
    Flushed and decided, he assaults at once;
    Exploring hands encounter no defence; 240
    His vanity requires no response,
    And makes a welcome of indifference.
    (And I Tiresias have foresuffered all
    Enacted on this same divan or bed;
    I who have sat by Thebes below the wall
    And walked among the lowest of the dead.)
    Bestows one final patronising kiss,
    And gropes his way, finding the stairs unlit . . .

    Unfortunately I'm less familiar with his other works as I'd like to be, it takes a bit of rereading for me to fully enjoy a lot of his writing.

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    Re: T S Eliot General

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