The whole men in shirtsleeves bit? He lifted it from Fitzgerald, lock stock
and barrel. No not the Minnesotan w/the besotted wife, but the guy
translated the Rubaiyat. Check it out.
on 9/24/02 11:32 AM, INGELBIEN RAPHAEL at [log in to unmask] wrote:
>> Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets
>> And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes
>> Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows?...
>> This does not prove the men are homosexuals, but given that they are
>> populating the "narrow streets at dusk" (and given the context of the
>> poem which we have not yet discussed in these short posts), I think that
>> the image being implied.
> It certainly _is_ a very disturbing passage, even by the standards of that
> most disturbing poem. And I think there may a homoerotic undertone to the
> poem. But there is one detail in the passage that goes against a homoerotic
> reading: the pipes. Freudian critics would probably have a field day on that
> image (and we're not even mentioning a possible echo of the ambiguous French
> word 'pipe'). I may be plain wrong here, but as far as I know, pipe-smoking
> was never part of the gay code. If those lonely men in shirt sleeves had
> been smoking cigarettes, it would be easier to find the passage homoerotic.
> Does anyone know more about gay fashions in the early 20th century?
> RaphaŽl Ingelbien
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