I keep thinking of Thomas Nashe's line: "Brightness falls from the air"--might
there be an allusive connection of some sort?
INGELBIEN RAPHAEL wrote:
> > Raphael, If that's a possibility, it seems to me it would
> > deprive the image of a lot of its power, don't you think?
> I don't see why, in so far as the reality was powerful enough in this case.
> Also, it only adds to the other meanings, it doesn't supplant them. The dove
> also is the Holy Spirit, and in the earlier section where the dove is
> mentioned, it clearly is a plane (cf 'the horizon of its homing').
> > Also, the is the verb "BREAKS the air". I can see a plane
> > doing that, but a bird?
> Some technical considerations here:
> - As far as I know, German bombers didn't dive, and their speed was nothing
> like that of a jet. They generally flew overhead at night, in relatively
> close formation, and dropped their bombs from a fairly respectable height.
> The bombs themselves did of course 'break the air'.
> - a pigeon suddenly catching fire in the night air could be said to break
> that air. What do you think?
> - if Eliot is referring to some daytime aerial combat, the 'dove descending
> breaks the air' makes more sense - the 'flickering flames' mentioned in the
> earlier passage refer to guns, not bombs. Only it's not quite clear whether
> the plane belongs to the RAF or the Luftwaffe. Maybe the ambiguity is
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