I mentioned the metaphysical poets before (whom Eliot admired and emulated) because their metaphors and similes, precisely, do NOT necessarily work "literally." In fact, most do not. Does "My love is like a red, red rose" mean she's red and has thorns? Are Prufrock's coffee spoons literally his life? I do not see the concern with this long exchange.
>>> Chokh Raj <[log in to unmask]> 3/4/2008 6:32 PM >>>
Alex Freer <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
Is one required to interpret all similes perfectly literally? Surely the
allusiveness of Eliot's verse should be allowed in his devices too?
Whether or not the simile works as an absolute should not colour the
fact that the simile itself brings forth a flurry of images and (as you
have nicely illustrated) emotions. Since this is so, I do not believe it
is as "broken" or ineffectual as some may portray it.
I appreciate your comments, Alex. Quite perceptive. Thanks. CR
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