I sent the first answer--Eliot to Quinn, 28 Sept. 1919--in _Letters_.
The second answer is "The Use of Poetry and the Use of Criticism," p. 93
in the paperback _Selected Prose of T. S. Eliot_:
The chief use of the 'meaning' of a poem, in the ordinary sense, may
be (for here again I am speaking of some kinds of poetry and not all) to
satisfy one habit of the reader, to keep his mind diverted and quiet, while
the poem does its work upon him: much as the imaginary burglar is
always provided with a bit of nice meat for the house-dog. . . .
Date sent: Sun, 12 Aug 2001 16:05:39 -0500
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From: Timothy Materer <[log in to unmask]>
To: tse <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: 2 questions
A friend has sent me the following two questions. I could answer the first
one quickly enough, I think, if I were near my books; but I have no idea
about the second. Can listmembers help?
--Letter (sometime between 1914-1919) where Eliot presents himself as a
--In which essay or review does Eliot liken the meaning of a poem to the
meat brought by a burglar to appease the watchdog while the thief's real
work is done?