Richard Seddon wrote: > > Carrol > > Please elaborate on how you think Eliot's note on what Tiresias sees "casts > an oblique light" on "Lustra", an early collection of poems, and "Homage to > Sextus Propertius" a long poem. Both "Lustra" and "Propertius" were > published well before TWL. "Lustra" was prior to Pound conceiving of poems > as masks or "Persona" to be cast off. Can you include "Mauberley", > published just prior to TWL, in this oblique light? > It was around 1912 or so I believe that Pound pointed out in a letter or a review or something (this is not my field of specialization, which is Milton & Pope, and I haven't tried to remember or research anything systematically) that Yeats wrote books not collections of disparate poems. (I hope I've got my dates right, because any date later than 1915 fucks up my argument here.) That is, by 1915 Pound definitely had in his head the idea of a book of poems which, though separately written, nevertheless constituted a _book_, not merely a collection. I've got an old typescript tucked away in my files someplace, written back in 1967 or so, arguing that _Lustra_ (as republished in _Personae_ 1926) was also such a book, and one with a 'plot' often found in various shapes in 19th century works, of a quest for a never-quite grasped object (Beauty, The Loved One, Truth, The Past). ("Who will, may hear Sordello's story told . . . .Who would has heard Sordello's story told." Oh, really? It's also perhaps the plot of _Portrait of a Lady_ and of _The Sacred Fount_, and numerous of James's short stories or novellas. I doubt the paper is worth digging up, but scribbled at the end of Lustra in my copy of Personae, The Collected Poems, is the following note, which I probably wrote about then: "Lustra tells the story of a poet's attempt -- guided by a not quite seen Lady -- to discover in the _past_ the principle which will _renew_ the present. He gets no further than seeng that merely to _record_ & to _ask_ is in itself an act of renewal." I've never done any of the careful bibliographical work that would be required to develop this perspective. But certainly "'Dompna Pois De Me No'us Cal'" shows a fairly full development of a poem conceived as a mask. Such a book (like the _Cantos_?!) is unified by the gaze of a central (but shifting) consciousness. Doesn't that describe TWL (or the at least the view of TWL expressed by a number of commentators, whether it is correct or not). As to _Mauberley_, though well aware that everyone, her sisters & brothers, and their aunts, go ga-ga over the poem, it has never clicked for me personally. I much prefer _Propertius_ and "Near Perigord." (This is a statment of personal preference, not a considered critical judgment.) Carrol Shop Girl For a moment she rested against me Like a swallow half blown to the wall, And they talk of Swinburne's women, And the shepherdess meeting with Guido. And the harlots of Baudelaire. [To Kalon]* Even in my dreams you have denied yourself to me And sent me only your handmaids. *Greek letters in text Gentildonna She passed and left no quiver in the veins, who now Moving among the trees, and clinging in the air she severed Fanning the grass she walked on then, endures: Grey olive leaves beneath a rain-cold sky.