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Analysis and comments on the boys i mean are not refined by e.e. cummings

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Comment 23 of 123, added on August 18th, 2011 at 6:13 PM.
the boys I mean are not refined

check out the song composed by the Elsie Dee Project with this
poem...www.elsiedeeproject.com

Pierre Voyer from Canada
Comment 22 of 123, added on August 18th, 2011 at 6:13 PM.
the boys I mean are not refined

check out the song composed by the Elsie Dee Project with this
poem...www.elsiedeeproject.com

Pierre Voyer from Canada
Comment 21 of 123, added on July 17th, 2011 at 2:03 AM.

The final line is magnificent. It moves the poem from good to superlative.



Ortrud Radbod from Belgium
Comment 20 of 123, added on October 14th, 2009 at 1:07 PM.

"you should above all else be glad and young"

"the way to hump a cow is not..."
(topography is mine)
First time i read "the boys i mean..."
i immidiately tho of Hopi Katchinas"...when they dance".

T.D. Pawley 4th from United States
Comment 19 of 123, added on July 15th, 2009 at 10:02 AM.

it's not anyone lived in a pretty how town, now is it?
I agree with several posts, this poem stands out to me as one of several
that harken to his experiences in WWI. the harshness, the unrefined-ness of
his comrades, the extremes of behavior and the use of sex as a diversion
from the painful realities of war. we don't hear alot about sexual
compulsion before Viet Nam, but here it is,

Charles from United States
Comment 18 of 123, added on March 16th, 2009 at 8:18 PM.

this is the best poem i have ever read, it does have sexualy content but
some people dont get the point, the poem is saying that there are all these
different guys and all the want is sex. He is telling you to watch out and
not do things that you will regret later in your life!!!

Y@zzy from United States
Comment 17 of 123, added on December 14th, 2008 at 9:51 PM.

Thanks, Larry, I garee with what you have said. As a Vietnam veteran, this
poem's images resonate with me. I wonder though if cummings may have
intended to say something more than just a tribute. It is my experience
that combat strips the refinement away from most every participant, not
just poorly educated common soldiers. I suspect that cummings himself felt
that same process based on his experiences in war. For me, he was a poet
who spoke his mind and had little to do with bullshit "civilized" veneers.

The images also go a little deeper: firing a mortar has a movement similar
to masturbation and machine guns can shake themselves and sound like
laughter. I seem to recall a description of a fictional characters
"machinegun-like laugh".

In summary, I find this poem to be both tribute and caveat: send your boys
(and girls) to war, expect them to return more than a bit unrefined.

jack from United States
Comment 16 of 123, added on October 18th, 2008 at 1:58 AM.

Wow, I just found out that one of my favorite songs was based on this poem.
It's called "The Boys Are Too Refined," by The Hush Sound.

Anonymous from United States
Comment 15 of 123, added on March 18th, 2008 at 5:21 PM.

First off, I love e.e. cummings' poetry and have been looking for more.
This site has been the answer to that.
Anywho, I noticed that everyone here seems to have missed what jumped out
at me most: Especially compared to his other poems, the language e.e.
cummings uses here is itself unrefined. He is not a poet who tends to spew
colorful language like a sailor, as he seems to in this poem.
From what I can tell, he is intentionally being ironic here. I have to
look at this poem some more. e.e. cummings tends to be easy to glaze over,
and it's too easy to just ignore the meaning if you skim a poem.
You don't have to be an english scholar, but he certainly makes you think a
little.

Ben from United States
Comment 14 of 123, added on December 11th, 2006 at 2:11 AM.

When I read this poem, it gives me a raging hard boner.

Leeroy Jenkins from United States

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Information about the boys i mean are not refined

Poet: e.e. cummings
Poem: the boys i mean are not refined
Added: Jan 31 2004
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