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Their marriage has generally been characterized as unhappy, troubled by Vivien’s neurotic illnesses and Eliot’s sexual apprehensions.The couple settled in London, and Eliot began teaching at a boy’s school while writing reviews for various periodicals and composing poetry.
And indeed there will be time To wonder, “Do I dare? ”Time to turn back and descend the stair, With a bald spot in the middle of my hair—[They will say: “How his hair is growing thin!
”]My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin, My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin—[They will say: “But how his arms and legs are thin! In a minute there is time For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. I have seen them riding seaward on the waves Combing the white hair of the waves blown back When the wind blows the water white and black.
Alfred Prufrock,” often called “the first Modernist poem,” appeared in the Harvard Advocate in 1906 while Eliot was an undergraduate.
Eliot 1915Author Biography Poem Text Poem Summary Themes Style Historical Context Critical Overview Criticism Sources For Further Study Segments of “The Love Song of J.
Let us go then, you and I, When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherised upon a table; Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, The muttering retreats Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells: Streets that follow like a tedious argument Of insidious intent To lead you to an overwhelming question ... The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes.
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening, Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains, Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys, Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap, And seeing that it was a soft October night, Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.Alfred Prufrock.” He completed his undergraduate studies in 1909 and his master’s degree in English literature the following year.Over the next six years Eliot pursued graduate studies in philosophy at the Sorbonne, Harvard, Marburg, and Oxford, completing his dissertation in 1916.Indeed, over the course of the poem, he sets up analogies between himself and various familiar cultural figures, among them Hamlet.This establishes a connection with Hamlet’s famous soliloquy (‘To be or not to be? Prufrock’s doubt that he deserves the answer he desires from this woman transforms the poem into a kind of interior monologue or soliloquy in which “To be or not to be? ” and “What or who am I to ask this woman to marry me?The Criterion is now recognized as one of the most distinguished periodicals in the twentieth century.After having lived in England for over a decade, in 1927 Eliot became a British subject and a member of the Anglican Church.And indeed there will be time For the yellow smoke that slides along the street, Rubbing its back upon the window-panes; There will be time, there will be time To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet; There will be time to murder and create, And time for all the works and days of hands That lift and drop a question on your plate; Time for you and time for me, And time yet for a hundred indecisions, And for a hundred visions and revisions, Before the taking of a toast and tea.In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo.Alfred Prufrock, as he walks to meet a woman for tea and considers a question he feels compelled to ask her (something along the lines of “Will you marry me? In fact, in this poem he never arrives at tea, let alone sings to the woman.The poem is composed of Prufrock’s own neurotic—if lyrical—associations.