The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock presents to us indecision. “Do I dare” to do all of these things? He is not sure what to do with himself and gives us scenarios and is never sure if he wants to go through with achieving or doing them. “how should I begin” to make his life better and get rid of the bad in it and “how should I presume” to go on with everyday life with these new changes, not allowing things to go back. The introduction before asking all of these questions gives us bad and sickly images, picturing the bad and unpleasantness in the world. There is time for the bad things to enter, and time to question like he has started to, to question how to get them out again and keep them out.
Disillusionment of 10 o’clock was a little confusing. I took away the theme of repression. Everyone is in white night-gowns, no color, no patterns. “None of them are strange”, they are all plain and boring and white, no accents or uniqueness. People do not dream creative dreams, except for the occasional person “sailor” who sticks out. All but him repress creativity and wild dreams, but he dares to dream of catching tigers in a strange place.
A theme present in anyone lived in a pretty how town is death. Cumming writes about a pretty how town, aka a boring mediocre town like our own. The years go by and we do our own things time and time again, spring summer autumn winter. People care more for themselves than others, but, the man “anyone” was loved by the girl “noone”. They marry, and then two stanzas later he dies. It seems like he’s saying our lives are boring, and a lot follow this same basic plot, as shown with the “someones married their everyones” and other replacements of names and titles. These vague words instead of names point towards him talking about people in general. He really shows that death is inevitable. “Reaped their sowing and went their came”, people may gain from what they do in life but eventually leave.
All of these poems seem to be connected by their sense of conforming. In the love song, he questions the things he should do or if he should conform, and cannot decide how to go about his life. Almost everyone in the disillusionment of 10 o’clock is conforming to one image, one idea of suppressing creativity or uniqueness. Pretty how town is about conforming to that cycle, living your life to a pattern that always ends the same way.
Anyone lived in a pretty how town is probably the most applicable to today. Society is changing and traditional life paths are becoming less strict, more people following unique paths and living for a greater purpose than a nice quiet life. But, many still get stuck in this pattern in small towns, just living the same thing every year til you die. It’s boring but true.
I liked anyone lived in a pretty how town the most, the wording kept your interest and made you read it over again to understand the thought put into choosing those words and why. It’s a good and fair message, calling everyone who goes by in life following the boring pattern of living out. Pointing out that we are going to die is an important makeup call for some and I think it was fun to read and well written.