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Analysis and comments on anyone lived in a pretty how town by e.e. cummings

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Comment 129 of 449, added on April 13th, 2007 at 10:33 PM.

"what is with everyone capitalizing EE! Do you know nothing about the man?,
he didn't capitalize anything, so please make it e.e cummings! "

I do know something about the man. Have you ever read his books? Based on
your comment I assume you've just read some of his poems. He always said
that he hates when people don't capitalize his name. He doesn't capitalize
it because it's HIS name. He thinks it's disrespectful for others to not
capitalize it.


David from United States
Comment 128 of 449, added on April 12th, 2007 at 9:15 AM.

I think this poem is talking to all people who are from the idyllic small
town. Picture a Bedford Falls kind of place right out of "It's a Wonderful
Life". I dont really get the reference to the bells, but as someone
mentioned it signals the passing of time, and I suppose that makes sense.`I
think the mentioning of seasons does match the passing of time.
Then the next line is "he sang his didn't he danced his did". It makes me
think of the proverb about actions speak louder than words. And the person
told all the things he wouldn't do, but we can see what he actually did
through his actions. (Like people may say when I grow up I am going to get
out of this small town, but years later, they are still in the same
place).

I read how somebody mentioned the little and small relates to the size of a
person's mind and I liked that explaination (otherwise I had no idea), but
I feel this one reflects how people are becoming more distnat from
eachother and more selfish. "They sowed their isn't they reaped their same"
to me means that they did not put all of their possible effort into the
things they did, and the results they got back were also less than perfect.
The last line in that stanza again marks the passing of time.

The "children guessed but only a few as down they forgot as up they grew)"
to me relates to the innocent dreams of a child. I remember how when I was
a child I wanted to be a rockstar and now my son is thinking of being a
fighter pilot, astronaut, or garbage man... the thing is that all kids have
plans and dreams when they are young, but as they grow older they forget.)
So the idea is that children tend to have big dreams when they are young
but they forget them as they grow older. (the last line is one I cannot
make so much sense of... but maybe just again echoing the distance from
others or isolation... but also maybe hinting that at this point that the
unimportant person has not found his true love or soulmate)

So after some time passes, it is time to add another leaf to the so called
family tree... a girl comes a long who shares in the job and grief of the
man (which I think reflects the pre womans lib attitude of the rold of a
woman towards a man.) I dont understand the bird by snow and stir by still
part... but the part that anyones any was all to her... refers to the
parents having a child who is important to the girl...

and eventually they get married.... someones married their everyones (so
when you get married the person you care most about is your everyone) and
as a married couple the experience both happiness and sadness. and they get
through their difficult times and continue with their life. the "sleep wake
hoe and then they said their nevers and they slept their dream) this refers
to how you get settled in a pattern of life go to bed, wake up, work, and
repeat.... there are things that you say you are never going to do (i.e. I
am never going to be like my parents or I would never have any children)
and then you end up never taking action to achieve the things in your
mind.

This next one is one of my favorite stanzas. First it refers to the passing
of time... then "and only the snow can begin to explain how children are
apt to forget to remember with up so floating many bells down) I dont get
the part about the bells... but I think the part about snow can be
understood in this way.... Perhaps if you are from a northern area where
you get a lot of snow you can remember as a child how magical and exciting
the snow once was, you could spend a long time outside building snowmans,
sledding, having snowball fights, building a snowfort, making
snowangels.... but as time passes, snow just becomes a cold burden that you
need to shovel it looses its magic.... and because the snow experiences
this change in attitude from people in how something is a magical
wonderland can turn to a freezing burden, the snow has felt this through
the contact with people and it can begin to explain how children forgot the
things that they guessed they would become when they are younger...

the part about one day anyone died I guess... I guess I think of this is a
metaphorical death. There comes a point in your life when you lose your
dreams... this is when you die. I have met many people who are living but
their soul or spirit is dead. Consider how much life is in the people who
are stuck in a cubical knowing they will never achieve the things that
hoped to do. There also comes a point in the marriage when the couple grows
distant and maybe people also stop caring about eachother so much... so it
does not necessarily have to be a real death but more of a spiritual death.
The busy folk just pass the who have lost their dreams and little by little
was by was all by all and deep by deep (yeah, I dont get that part at all.)
Maybe maybe slowly people let of of their dreams little by little and they
become memories of the past and get buried deeper and deeper in the memory
once they have been let go and as time passes they find instead of
ambitious hopes and dreams they are let go and the only dreams people have
are the ones when they are sleeping but they are no longer the goal
oriented dreams. All people are experiencing this and (dont get the earth
by april) and I dont understand the part wish by spirit and if by yes.
Women and men all live their time on the life and they get the things from
the effort that they have provided, and their time here passes (this is the
actual death---not the metaphorical one) and again the reference to
nature.

Over all I sometimes feel the poem is incredibly depressing, but at others
I can see something that is completly inspirational. I think it is sad in
the sense that people grow up and forget their dreams, but I find it
inspirational in the sense that I feel this poem tries to remind you that
that is something that happens and by calling your attention to it, it
encourages you not to forget your dreams but to accomplish something. I
think it is important to remember we only have a short time to accomplish
things.

I feel the overall tone as the poem is read is happy and uplifting, and I
guess that is why I feel the poem is not intended to be depressing.

Teya Yu from United States
Comment 127 of 449, added on April 9th, 2007 at 8:32 PM.

It is only confusing because he uses general pronouns that are none
specific. If you substitute all the 'anyone's and 'no one's for a name the
poem actually makes sense. It' s a story of someone's life.
The reason why it is no specific is so that everyone can better apply the
poems to themselves and their own lives.

Mary from Canada
Comment 126 of 449, added on March 13th, 2007 at 11:58 PM.

i found this poem accidentally when i was going through my english book. i
had to pick three to analyze and i thought that this was a wonderful poem.
I think that the mention of the seasons and the stars is to show the
passage of time just as the tolling of the bells. Cummings describes
growing up and the realization that our lives are not always what we wanr
them to be. He describes how we repress our true dreams and feelings. I
also think it describes how we are invisible to the world and the
realization that we cannot depend on others because they are too wrapped up
in their own lives. I have no clue if this is right but i truly enjoyed
this poem

flor from United States
Comment 125 of 449, added on February 26th, 2007 at 2:09 PM.

i've been looking at this poem for a while now trying to figure out what it
means. I've been reading other people's comments and something just clicked
for me regarding the line 'Women and men (both dong and ding)'. Both women
and men (dong and ding) represent the bells chiming which in turn represent
the passing of time much like the women and men getting older representing
the passing of years. i have no idea if that helps anyone but hey, thanks
for helping me to understand it more!

nicola from United Kingdom
Comment 124 of 449, added on February 8th, 2007 at 1:39 AM.

I hate e.e. cummings!!! jk but his poems are very hard to
understand...especialy this one! I haven't read that many but the ones I
have read in my English III class are very hard. I would have to say this
is a great poem because what I got out of it is that he is talking about
how people go from being totaly hated and invisable to totaly likeable and
very visable people. Good job e.e. cummings for making our English III
class work hard to understand the poems of yours that we have and will
read.
Shelly
in Oregon

Shelly from United States
Comment 123 of 449, added on December 11th, 2006 at 7:08 PM.

i think this poem speaks about life, and the human condition very well.
despite our illusions about what it should be, he bluntly talks about what
it will be. our dreams will become nothing, our friendships are
meaningless, and there will be no actual progress in life: how things are
now is how they always will be. the positive aspect of our lives, cummings
concludes, is our loving relationships.
with his tone of bitter reminiscence, he hints that we are doomed to
concentrate on our shortcomings. the poem describes its own futility as it
concludes the human condition is the desire to find the human condition.
happiness is not external - it is being internally content.

steve from United States
Comment 122 of 449, added on April 24th, 2006 at 1:00 PM.

It is nice to think of this poem as being about two specific people, anyone
and noone. The beauty of the story is that the pronouns speak of everyone.
Anyone whose ever been ignored or alone but found their noone who
completed their being. The poem, to me, is a story of the invisible
becoming visible, the unnoticed becoming loved even though the rest of the
world continues to evolve and change around them. It is a lilting piece of
poetry that reflects life and does so with a peculiarity that only cummings
could create.

Timothy from United States
Comment 121 of 449, added on April 23rd, 2006 at 5:54 PM.

personally this is one of my favorite poems i have read. one thing i love
about it is that he manages to fit 2 similar stories into one poem and both
give sort of seperate emotions but give the same central themes about
growing up and such. by different emotions i mean it's sort of sad how
someone may grow up all alone but then you just have to change the anyone
and noone into names and it's no longer really sad. i also love how the
lines just sound really cool and don't have to be straight forward with
their meaining. i dunno, i just like this poem alot. there is my ATTEMPT to
explain why i like it.

Cody from United States
Comment 120 of 449, added on April 20th, 2006 at 8:06 PM.

Dear Jesse,

I do not have to be eloquent to present an argument on americanpoems.com.
It seems that you and I come from the two main opinions on poetry which
happen to clash the most. I understand that you believe we should analyze
and such and psychoanalyze cummings and delve into his life to grasp why he
wrote what he wrote. But, I disagree. I come from the other, which
basically means that I believe that some basic biographical information
should be looked at, and that we should think about the poem while we are
reading it etc.

Here is basically what I believe: Poetry, a complex menagerie of words. Let
it be taken for what it is the first time eyes make contact, read until the
reader has no need for it (whether quickly or slowly), and
remembered for what it was. My background would help some understand my
poetry, but who cares about what meaning I gave it, I only care what you
bring to my work. Without a reader, my work is wasted, it's the least I can
do for a partner.

So, we both have great opinions, and we could argue and argue until our
fingers bleed, but it's not worth it. I respect your opinion, please
respect mine, that is all I ask. Sorry if I offended you previously.

-- ME


CHR from United States

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Information about anyone lived in a pretty how town

Poet: e.e. cummings
Poem: anyone lived in a pretty how town
Added: Jan 31 2004
Viewed: 1030 times
Poem of the Day: Oct 27 2000


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