[log in to unmask] wrote:
> OK. How about:
>      Gull against the wind, in the windy straits
> Of Belle Isle, or running on the Horn,
> White feathers in the snow, the Gulf claims,
> And an old man driven by the Trades
> To a sleepy corner.

Eliot never wrote anything better than these lines.

And they trigger an idle thought that I've had off and on over the
years. This may be a quite false impression, but my impression is that a
rather high proportion of the lines that stick in one's head or that get
quoted (and stand out) in various contexts (thinking only of pentameter
lines now) are lines with only one polysyllabic (actually disyllabic)
word per line. And often (again a mere impression which could be wildly
wrong) such lines are preceded by a flurry of polysyllabic verse:

Beyond the circuit of the shuddering Bear
In fractured atoms. Gull . . . .

How would you scan "And an old man driven by the Trades" incidentally?


> -- Steve --