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>But the situation is different with the awful daring lines. They
>immediately follow the first speaking of the thunder, and _in_ the poem,
>they are as I suggested earlier an abstract proposition about human
>experience --
 
But doesn't the begining of "the awful daring lines"--
 
"My friend, blood shaking my heart"--
 
sound very concrete and personal, suggesting that these lines are not offering ***only*** an abstract proposition, but also at a particular story of "surrender" or intimacy (even if that story is only hinted at)? Of course, this wouldn't have to be an autobiographical story. But if some readers find the lines more resonant when read in connection with Eliot' biography, I don't really see the harm (especially if those readers are also open to other interpretations). Reading these lines as a fragment of story (whether the story i autobiographical or fictional) doesn't preclude also reading them as an "abstract proposition" or general statement whihc reader are called upon to affirm or deny.
 
Brian