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In this line Eliot's unlikely juxtapositions of words, i.e., "irresponsible foetus" and the bizarre image, i.e., a foetus that laughs, is downright Surrealist. Perhaps Breton got some ideas from Eliot! Diana
 
Nancy writes:
>
> I agree with Diana that the issue is not simply whether one can "make sense" of this trope or whether there are many similes that are--like most in metaphysical poets--a linking of the extremely unlike.
>
> That is separate from whether this one works. I'm not sure how it does, but I think it has an impact of evoking the kind of mockery the poem aims at. How one feels about that kind of attitude is also separate.
> Nancy
>
> >>> Diana Manister <[log in to unmask]> 03/02/08 2:37 PM >>>
>
> Is it inconceivable (no pun!) that Eliot created an infelicitous if not downright bad trope? Diana> Diana Manister wrote:> > > > . . . Eliot's assertion that a foetus laughs.> > What do you think of the phrase, "blind mouths"?> > Of other care they little reck'ning make,> Then how to scramble at the shearers feast,> And shove away the worthy bidden guest.> Blind mouthes! that scarce themselves know how to hold> A Sheep-hook, or have learn'd ought els the least> That to the faithfull Herdmans art belongs!> > Or> > "A man that studies revenge keeps his own wounds green."> Bacon> > "I do not ask much: / I beg cold comfort." --Shakespeare> > "The Oriel Common Room stank of logic" --Cardinal Newman> > "The voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses" --e.e. cummings> > Carrol
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