April is also a month of abrupt change. Out of the quiet routine dormancy
of winter comes life with all the hope and dispair that especially
accompanies all human life.
Significantly it was not the month that Verdenal was killed in and TSE was
still working to keep his marriage viable.
McIntosh, NM, USA
From: Rickard A Parker <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Tuesday, July 03, 2001 10:26 AM
Subject: Re: Wasteland
>My first reply didn't seem to get through. I'm trying again with a
>Andy at Moravian College wrote:
>> At the beginning of the "Wasteland", Eliot takes the true month of the
>> Romantics and slanders our customary perceptions of this time of year.
>> this a delibrite reaction against romanticism on behalf of classicism?
>"April" was not the original beginning of the "The Waste Land." There
>was a section before that on a late night in Boston by some "rowdies"
>(Eliot used to roam streets at night.) I mention this because the
>unusual opening of the poem as drafted would have reduced somewhat the
>shock of "April is the cruellest month."
>Eliot would be aware of his slandering April (great image) but it is
>there for other reasons other than slamming romanticism. It marks the
>time for vegetation ceromonies for instance.
>April was the month in 1915 that he met his first wife and also the
>opening of the Gallipoli Campaign where his friend Jean Verdenal was
>killed (see the dedication to "Prufrock and Other Observations.")
>Sometime after getting a feel for what is on the surface of the poem,
>consider the personal elements here and elsewhere too.
> Rick Parker
>P.S. - Nice puns Marcia.