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"Poem: Or, Beauty Hurts Mr. Vinal"

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Gabi Zegarra-Ballon

on 23 October 2013

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Transcript of "Poem: Or, Beauty Hurts Mr. Vinal"

"Poem: Or, Beauty Hurts Mr. Vinal"
E. E. Cummings
take it from me kiddo
believe me
my country,'tis of

you,land of the Cluett
Shirt Boston Garter and Spearmint
Girl With The Wrigley Eyes(of you
land of the Arrow Ide
and Earl &
Wilson
Collars)of you I
sing:land of Abraham Lincoln and Lydia E. Pinkham,
land above all of Just Add Hot Water And Serve—
from every B. V. D.

let freedom ring

amen. I do however protest,anent the un
-spontaneous and otherwise scented merde which
greets one(Everywhere Why)as divine poesy per
that and this radically defunct periodical. I would

suggest that certain ideas gestures
rhymes,like Gillette Razor Blades
having been used and reused
to the mystical moment of dullness emphatically are
Not To Be Resharpened. (Case in point

if we are to believe these gently O sweetly
melancholy trillers amid the thrillers
these crepuscular violinists among my and your
skyscrapers—Helen & Cleopatra were Just Too Lovely,
The Snail's On The Thorn enter Morn and God's
In His andsoforth

do you get me?)according
to such supposedly indigenous
throstles Art is O World O Life
a formula:example, Turn Your Shirttails Into
Drawers and If It Isn't An Eastman It Isn't A
Kodak therefore my friends let
us now sing each and all fortissimo A-
mer
I

ca, I
love,
You. And there're a
hun-dred-mil-lion-oth-ers,like
all of you successfully if
delicately gelded (or spaded)
gentlemen(and ladies)—pretty

littleliverpil-
heated-Nujolneeding-There's-A-Reason
americans(who tensetendoned and with
upward vacant eyes,painfully
perpetually crouched,quivering,upon the
sternly allotted sandpile
—how silently
emit a tiny violetflavoured nuisance: Odor?

ono.
comes out like a ribbon lies flat on the brush
Themes
American materialism
Atypicality
Critique of Art
Things to Note
sentences don't end at the end of lines
does not follow a structure (i.e rhyme)
mentions "kiddo"
much more capitalization than normal (85), still doesn't capitalize "i"
lots of punctuation and many line breaks
strange spacing
very strong use of allusions to many products of the time
strange title?
use of diction
Allusions
Harold Vinal
started career as a pianist but later became a poet
wrote for and founded Voices, a literary magazine
was never very widely known, and highly critiqued, especially by Cummings
many allusions scattered throughout the rest of the poem
take it from me kiddo
believe me
my country,'tis of
reference to "My country tis of thee"
mocking tone, especially towards whoever he is speaking to
patriotism
you, land of the Cluett
Shirt Boston Garter and Spearmint
Girl With The Wrigley Eyes(of you
land of the Arrow Ide
and Earl &
Wilson
Collars)of you i
sing:land of Abraham Lincoln and Lydia E. Pinkham,
land above all of Just Add Hot Water And Serve--
from every B.V.D.
Cluett- shirt from the '20s
Boston Garter- holds up socks
Spearmint Girl With The Wrigley Eyes- green-eyed girl used in advertising this gum
Earl & Wilson Collars- starched collars
Lydia E. Pinkham- advertised a pill that could fix anything (on same level as Abraham Lincoln?)
Just Add Hot Water And Serve- Campbell's soup slogan
BVP- type of shirt sold in the '20s
let freedom ring
mocking
amen. i do however protest, anent the un
-spontaneous and otherwise scented merde which
greets one(Everywhere Why)as divine poesy per
that and this radically defunct periodical. i would
"amen"- about religious strength of the time
"radically defunct periodical"- once again criticizing Vinal's literary magazine because it was boring.
suggest that certain ideas gestures
rhymes, like Gillette Razor Blades
having been used and reused
to the mystical moment of dullness emphatically are
Not To Be Resharpened. (Case in point
"Gillette Razor Blades" "are Not To Be Resharpened"
do not try to reuse, just throw away and move on.
if we are to believe these gently O sweetly
melancholy trillers amid the thrillers
these crepuscular violinists among my and your
skyscrapers--Helen & Cleopatra were Just Too Lovely,
The Snail's On The Thorn enter Morn and God's
In His andsoforth
"melancholy trillers"- songs in commercials
"Helen and Cleopatra"- both were gorgeous woman in two different stories
"The Snail's On The Thorn enter Morn and God's In His"- Pippa Passes reference (a play by Robert Browning)
do you get me?)according
to such supposedly indigenous
throstles Art is O World O Life
a formula:example, Turn Your Shirttails Into
Drawers and If It Isn't An Eastman It Isn't A
Kodak therefore my friends let
us now sing each and all fortissimo A-
mer
i
"If It Isn't An Eastman It Isn't A Kodak"- reference to Kodak company ad campaign
cuts off "America" after "i"
criticism towards "art" of the '20s

ca,I
love,
You. And there're a
hun-dred-mil-lion-oth-ers,like
all of you successfully if
delicately gelded(or spaded)
gentlemen(and ladies)--pretty
finishes word "America"
breaks up "hundred" and "million" and "others" but combines the three together
littleliverpil-
heated-Nujolneeding-There's-A-Reason
americans(who tensetendoned and with
upward vacant eyes,painfully
perpetually crouched,quivering,upon the
sternly allotted sandpile
--how silently
emit a tiny violetflavoured nuisance:Odor?

"littleliverpil"- pill to cure torpid livers
Nujol- oil used to relieve constipation
"There's-A-Reason"- slogan for Postum (a coffee subtitute with no caffeine)
ono.
comes out like a ribbon lies flat on the brush
"Odorono"- advertisement for a strong antiperspirant that eliminated odor
"comes out like a ribbon lies flat on the brush"- slogan for Colgate toothpaste
Diction
most all of poem is references to products of the time
sounds almost like a song when you read it (very sing-songy)
Thesis
In E.E. Cummings' poem "Poem: Or, Beauty Hurts Mr. Vinal" the use of capitalization pokes fun at the materialistic side of America during the '20s.
i am Writing



i Was an undergraduate


i have only this one “Subject” ?

i would try to contemplate
i Stole
i Failed

the portrait of a young lady and paradise lost were kind of hopeless;

a.
Physical.
Fact.

what is going on?
i have short attention and forged papers
i write to find out
i knew I couldn’t…

but

i am Writing
i am writing to find out- everything

like a book of common prayer my
mind is full of thoughts

i am writing to find out everything until
the day i finish


Sources
"Literary Explorations :)." : Explication of "Poem" by e.e. cummings. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Oct. 2013.
"On " Poem, or Beauty Hurts Mr Vinal"."On " Poem, or Beauty Hurts Mr Vinal". N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Oct. 2013.
"Vinalhaven Historical Society."Vinalhaven Historical Society. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Oct. 2013.
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