Charles Harper

Modern Poetry 306

Dr. Gharabegian

T.S Eliot

The love Song of J.Alfred Prufrock 

The love song of J.Alfred Prufrock is one of those poems that if you read it more than once it offers a great delight. Like a lot of modernist poetry, it offers a lot of surface beauty but when looked at deeper it presents a grater message and /or messages.

The parts that stuck out to me were the question we dare not ask, presented in the first stanza. The significance to the reader is that it prepares you to pose questions to yourself as you read as well as it implies the question or questions of life and its meaning. Its vagueness and fill in the blank style of posing the question aligns itself perfectly with the modernist approach to thought. My life question dose not necessarily answers your needs. “Let us go and make our visit “ (12) suggest mystery commonality we as humans can share in this journey of answering the question of life. The constant shift in scenery leads to the reader to feel displaced in poem. I find that for me the images that come as you read are representative of the different lives we all lead. Suspending those coffee spoon moments shows Eliot’s wondering in mystery. “So how should I presume? “(54) If life is becoming predictable and it is determined already. The questions present in the poem spoke to me the most because out side of the context they are put in the questions take objective flight .Its almost as you experience the poem it becomes obvious these are the questions we ask ourselves and Eliot just gives words to put them in perspective for you to form other questions about the meaning of life.