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ee cummings

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Anum Ali

on 27 April 2010

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Transcript of ee cummings

E.E. Cummings Background Edward Estlin Cummings was born on October 14, 1894 in Cambridge, MA
Came from an affluent New-England family
Father: Edward Cummings, a professor of sociology and political science at Harvard, and later a minister of the South Congregational Church in Boston. Mother: Rebecca Haswell Clarke was also well-educated and encouraged E.E. and his sister Elizabeth to read and write from an early age.
Attended Harvard University where he received his BA in 1915 and a Master's degree in English and Classical Studies in 1916
Served with an ambulance corps. in France during WWI, where he was detained for 6 months in 1917 on charges of writing incriminating letters back home.
Upon returning home from internment, EE was drafted back to the war.
1920s-30s: Divided his time between NYC and Paris, where he studied art
Published first book of verse, Tulips and Chimneys, in 1923
Also dabbled in playwriting (Him in 1927), surrealist painting, and writing experimental prose (which usually conveyed some antiwar senitment)
In his lifetime, published 12 volumes of verse His Work Influences Personal Life "In Just--" "if there are any heavens" in Just-
spring when the world is mud-
luscious the little
lame balloonman

whistles far and wee

and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it's
spring

when the world is puddle-wonderful

the queer
old balloonman whistles
far and wee
and bettyandisbel come dancing

from hop-scotch and jump-rope and

it's
spring
and

the

goat-footed

balloonMan whistles
far
and
wee
made-up words names are lowercase and combined
indicates rush/energy with which children come outside
shows how the actual names of the children don't matter as much as the feelings they imply allusion to Pan of Greek
Myth, god of music and
herding who had goat's parts if there are any heavens my mother will (all by herself) have
one. It will not be a pansy heaven nor
a fragile heaven of lilies-of-the-valley but
it will be a heaven of blackred roses

my father will be (deep like a rose
tall like a rose)

standing near my

(swaying over her
silent)
with eyes which are really petals and see

nothing with the face of a poet really which
is a flower and not a face with
hands
which whisper
This is my beloved my

(suddenly in sunlight

he will bow,

& the whole garden will bow) alliteration flower
metaphor personification 2 similes Flower Symbolism:
pansy- freethought
lily- sweetness/ return of happiness
rose- love, passion
(black- death. red- love)
imagery "may i feel said he" may i feel said he
(i'll squeal said she
just once said he)
it's fun said she

(may i touch said he
how much said she
a lot said he)
why not said she

(let's go said he
not too far said she
what's too far said he
where you are said she)

may i stay said he
which way said she
like this said he
if you kiss said she

may i move said he
is it love said she)
if you're willing said he
(but you're killing said she

but it's life said he
but your wife said she
now said he)
ow said she

(tiptop said he
don't stop said she
oh no said he)
go slow said she

(cccome?said he
ummm said she)
you're divine! said he
(you are Mine said she) Only word capitalized slant rhyme exaggerated
words reveals a more series
subject/undertone in
an otherwise
playful poem Displays Cummings'
characteristic use of
parentheses as a means
of poetic expression Series of 8 quatrains
with an aabb rhyme scheme Introduced to modernists the likes of Ezra Pound and Gertrude Stein while at Harvard
Experiences living during a time of anxiety/warfare (WWI, WWII, the Cold War)
Experiences in French internment camp inspired his war-novel The Enormous Room
His parents, especially his father's death in 1926
His childhood in Cambridge and summers with family in NH Met and married his first wife Elaine Orr when he returned from duty in WWI (1918); by 1926, their marriage ended in a complicated divorce (Elaine cheated on E.E.)
Became involved with Anne Barton
In 1926, Cummings' parents were in a fatal car crash; his father was killed while his mother sustained a cerebral hemmorage
Cummings successfully marriend and divorced Anne Barton in the 5 years following his father's death
In 1932, Cummings met Marion Morehouse, his one true love and the woman he would spend the rest of his life with (though they were never actually married).
1947- Mother, Rebecca, died while in stroke-inducedd coma.
On September 3, 1962, Edward Estlin Cummings collapsed from a cerebral hemorrhage at his summer home in Joy Farm




Modernist, but not in the same sense as Dyland Thomas or TS Eliot. More inspired by the modernist offshoot of Imagism
Eccentric punctuation and phrasing
Use of typography to "paint a picture" with his words
Minimal/irregualr use of capital letters
Early work exhibits a fresh childlike innocence/candor, while later work (that written after father's death) is more somber and symbolic.
Full transcript