Oh, do not ask, “What is it?”
Let us go and make our visit.- Prufrock said. (Eliot- The Love Song of Alfred J. Prufrock)
I read the poem made me cry yesterday. It has too many similarities with my growing out of adolescent crisis. You know how sometimes you find it hard to explain what is going on in your mind and find a piece of prose or poetry that defines that unarticulated thought? Prufrock's inarticulation is so symbolic of my thought processes that he didn't need to speak it out. His quest for articulation, his self conciousness, his self disgust said in many incoherant words what I have been trying to say to the world for the longest time.
He talks about passing time, and his inabilites. The pessimism in the poem attached with symbolic images is so beautiful, it makes you forget that the distinct emotion here is negativity. It focuses on the inner recessions of the character Prufrock's mind, without wandering about the outside realities, or complexities, if you will, because his fragmented self/ mind is complex enough.
I am rather over-whelmed here. No words; speechless. Only this time, Eliot has ensured that can be rather acceptable, only because he turned this emotion into beautiful poetry.
"I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a farther room.
So how should I presume?"
Aah, beautiful, beautiful inarticulation. Beautiful complexities. (I don't know if that is an oxymoron)
...and for my most favorite part of the poem. The part that made me cry.
"No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous—
Almost, at times, the Fool."