There're more medical lines that come to mind, from 4Q
such a "The whole eath is our hospital"
and the lines about the surgeon's probe, &c.

There is a thesis to be had about Eliot's interest in healing.

The more I think about it, the more it seems
that nursing is a wonderful background to bring to
the study of Eliot. I'm sure a nurse could recognise
implications that a crazy old academic wouldn't think of.

I'm excited at the possibilities for you, Rita.

-----Original Message-----
From: Dave Martin
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: 5/11/03 11:04 PM
Subject: Re: An amateur Eliot enthusiast's wild musing

OK.  This thread of conversation represents just a little too much
coincidence for me to resist...

I posted a few days ago with some silly musings on Prufrock that were
mostly the result of an idle week spent nursing a hand fresh from
surgery.  You see, I had printed Prufrock out and brought it with me to
the hospital on my day of surgery, reasoning that it would be easier to
deal with a few sheets of paper rather than lugging along a book.  As it
happened, I was more or less talked into doing the surgery with local
anasthetic.  This was a grave mistake on my part, but it allowed for me
to be fully awake on the operating table whilst the surgery proceeded
behind a curtain.  With my free hand, I continued to read through
Prufrock chuckling at the irony of those too-famous first lines, trying
to say calm while all sorts of ungodly noises and proclamations came
from the vicinity of my now numbed limb.

At some point, the nurse who would ordinarily have been the
anesthesiologist's assistant, but instead sat idly watching my heart
rate and blood pressure became curious and asked me if I was reading a
letter.  I replied that I was reading poetry, and ended up reciting a
bit of the poem to her.  She loved it.  I returned later in the week and
left a collection with a nice note.

So who says that nurses and Eliot don't meet in the course of day to day

-----Original Message-----
From: Peter Montgomery [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent: Sunday, May 11, 2003 9:33 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: An amateur Eliot enthusiast's wild musing

In the nursing program at our college, at one time, as

part of the study of criminal psychology, they had a text

of famous pieces of literature which illustraed various

syndromes pertinent to the course. It was required reading.

Made great sense to me. Don't know if they still do it.

I once had a psyche. nurse in a lit course, when I taught Charles

Williams' DESCENT INTO HELL. She said she'd met

every person in the book.

Somehow it's not hard to think that there are bridges

to be built between your various worlds.


Dr. Peter C. Montgomery
Dept. of English
Camosun College
3100 Foul Bay Rd.
Victoria, BC CANADA V8P 5J2
[log in to unmask]

-----Original Message-----
From: Rita Proffitt [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent: Sunday, May 11, 2003 5:01 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: An amateur Eliot enthusiast's wild musing

Peter and Nancy and Jennifer and Marcia,
       Thank you in advance (TIA) for assisting me with my assignment. I
would like you to know I am not here just to do a paper, but am
interested in Eliot and your thoughts. My boring background is that I am
a nurse and after many moons, am returning to a junior college to learn
something other than how the body works in health and disease. I worked
in and ICU for 18 years. Also worked many other areas prior to that. I
love my career as a nurse, but am enjoying learning about lit, poetry,
etc. Areas that were never taught, or discussed in school. Do you know
what it is like hang with docs and medical people for 30 years??
eeeekkkkk so I am "old". I became a nurse at 22..... or 6 as when I
lie... lol.

No one ever says - so how 'bout TS Eliot? They just talk about MI's and
traumas, and  how insurance is destroying healthcare.

K - nuff said. I accessed the TS Eliot Wasteland and heard him recite
the poem. Also accessed Peter's web site. What a fun place this is. I
hope to observe and learn as much as I can. rita