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TSE  May 2007

TSE May 2007

Subject:

Re: The life in the poem Was: New Topic

From:

Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

T. S. Eliot Discussion forum.

Date:

Thu, 31 May 2007 15:07:29 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (114 lines)

Interestingly, I do not find that film or tv images are more vivid for
me than those I imagine from words.  A professor long ago told me I have
a "medieval imagination" because what I imagine is experienced as
intensely as what I (literally) see.

But the importance of Marie for me is not only or simply that she
herself was real as that she is part of a significant experience in
Eliot's life that is now available in his letters but was not until they
were published.  He was in Germany when WWI broke out, and he wrote
about his fear and the fear of his friends about escaping and his own
luck in being American because we were not yet in the War so he could
leave.  I think the entire opening section now reads for me with the
resonance of his own visit to Munich, the meeting with a person there
who was part of that world, the way the world changed after that summer
and a later April.
Nancy

>>> Paul Meahan <[log in to unmask]> 05/31/07 2:17 PM >>>
9/11 and "Falling towers" is also a stand-out image for me too as an  
example of how I read something differently than I used to.   
Interestingly enough, the knowledge that Marie was real, and really  
said some of those lines of ennui is not particularly arresting for  
me, and does not change how I read that particular passage.  I think  
that the difference between these two images is visual for me, and the  
visual has more power in my brain it seems.

Interestingly, the prof I TA'ed for these past couple years showed a  
Powerpoint slideshow of images of bombed out buildings/cities after  
WWI with no commentary or music...just silence.  I found it  
interesting to see students react to the devastation in a visceral  
way.  They were certainly moved by the photos, and consequently more  
moved by lines from the poem that they had initially "not understood."

Best,
Paul Meahan

Quoting Peter Montgomery <[log in to unmask]>:

> A good set of tasks.
> For me, somewhere in there is the element of universality,
> ... getting in touch with the sense of connectedness to past and   
> future and to
> the human condition in general. Because 9/11 the image of falling
towers
> is reinforced....
>
> Cheers,
> Peter
>   ----- Original Message -----
>   From: Richard Seddon
>   To: [log in to unmask]
>   Sent: Tuesday, May 29, 2007 7:10 AM
>   Subject: Re: The life in the poem Was: New Topic
>
>
>   Dear Nancy
>
>
>
>   Reading a poem is multi-tasking to me
>
>
>
>   There is the poem and the enjoyment I get from the rhythms and the  
>  sounds of the words.  This doesn't change  with knowledge.
>
>
>
>   When I finish a poem I am left with an overall impression, call it  
>  an unworded understanding, a feeling about the poem.  This is   
> unchanged with knowledge of the poet's life or circumstances.  It is  
>  changed by knowledge of another reader's impression.
>
>
>
>   There is the a worded meaning of what  I understand from a poem.    
> That changes with additional readings and with insight from others   
> readings.  It changes little from my understanding better the   
> details of a poet's life
>
>
>
>   Then there is the detail in the poem.  Who was Marie?  Why the   
> other languages?  What about the Tarot pack?  Etc, etc, etc.  This   
> is of course greatly affected by background knowledge of the poet.
>
>
>
>   I enjoy good poetry for the richness that good poetry brings to   
> each of these tasks.
>
>
>
>   Rick Seddon
>
>   Portales, New Mexico
>
>   USA
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
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>
>
>   No virus found in this incoming message.
>   Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>   Version: 7.5.467 / Virus Database: 269.8.0/817 - Release Date:   
> 5/24/2007 4:01 PM
>

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