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Selected Poems

4.23 of 5 stars 4.23  ·  rating details  ·  6,358 ratings  ·  102 reviews
Chosen by Eliot himself, the poems in this volume represent the poet’s most important work before Four Quartets. Included here is some of the most celebrated verse in modern literature-”The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” “Gerontion,” “The Waste Land,” “The Hollow Men,” and “Ash Wednesday”-as well as many other fine selections from Eliot’s early work.
Paperback, 127 pages
Published 1965 by FABER paper covered EDITIONS
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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"Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow
For Thine is the Kingdom
Between the conception
And the creation
Between the emotion
And the response
Falls the Shadow
Life is very long"

"Because I do not hope to turn again
Let these words answer
For what is done, not to be done again
May the judgement not be too heavy upon us

Because these wings are no longer wings to fly
But merely vans to beat the air
The air which is now thoroughly small and dry
Smaller and dryer than the will
Ena Rusnjak
Best read out-loud for yourself, and remember misogyny and antisemitism does not mean poetry void of beauty and truth. The grimy beauty of Eliot's masterful versification compresses and plants dense metaphysical ideas next to one another which find their expression in a pure and controlled diction. I'm afraid I was often left writhing in some kind of paroxysm of pleasure. This is difficult poetry with an encyclopedic sprawl of references but very rewarding if you're invested. My favourites compr ...more
Dear T. S. Eliot,
I had never read your poetry before. But from the first stanza of "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" you captivated me and I was spellbound by your words.
I find now you hold a place in my heart as one of my favourite poets.
I only regret that this selection of your poems is so short, being less than 100 pages. Also, I did not understand the poems in French very well. Translations would have been appreciated since my personal translations were rather shoddy, not to mention chop
Неслучайно Елиът е лауреат на Нобеловата награда за литература.

"Бих желал да съм яките клещи на рак,
които пробиват подовете на мълчаливи морета.
И ще си струва ли накрая,
и ще си струва ли наистина,
след залезите, дворовете и уличната влага,
след романите и чайовете, и шумящите поли
и колко още?… И дали?…
Не, невъзможно е да се изкаже това, което има да се каже!
Но някакъв магически фенер върху екрана ще покаже
схемите на моите нерви;
дали, дали накрая ще си струва
а ако тя, облегнала назад глав
"Do I dare
Disturb the universe?"

Reading his poetry is such a unique experiance, it is like I know what the next line is going to be before reading it. The ideas and images follow one another so effortlessly, it is so immensely captivating, touching and inspiring.
I had a small piece of paper next to me while reading it, which is now covered in quotes.
Understanding can come with growth and/or maturity, but how do we know when our dislike of something comes from lack of understanding rather than a simple matter of taste? Eliot lays himself bare, his insecurities and lowest parts offered. He is his audience, he is his reader--the root of the truth in his words. Genius and honesty combined is daunting, but there is beauty to carry you through.
**edited 01/29/14

In general, my reading tastes are pulp-press-simple. I can neither appreciate, nor enjoy, nor, I admit, even understand, poetry. But Eliot is different, and I don't know why. I have very little understanding of what is going on in the poems themselves, but the lines that are so seeped in meaning and imagery and are so tangible that I can taste them as I read.

I remember having to analyse the first part of "The Waste Land" in high school, and, for once, hating the ponderous appli
Actually, I've read these poems many times before. In fact, I read some of them several times during any given year. Everything up to "Choruses from the Rock" is, IMHO, pretty much gold. "Choruses" (which I focused more on this go round) however kind of sucks. It's dry, it's pompous, and it takes up too many pages. At this point in Eliot's writing life, the magic is pretty much gone. As you read "Choruses," you'll hear many of the earlier poems (especially if you've been reading straight through ...more
I do not know how best to review and relate the works of Eliot. "The Waste Land" is an atrocious work, as I stated in my review of it alone, that is unintelligible at best and, in reading reviews from readers who adored it, that seems to be a consensus. It is a work praised for coming about at the right time and reflecting a mood and attitude that the dominant writers of the period adhered to. It's intentionally disjointed and broken and weird smattering of allusion and illusion.

Then there are w
Poetry and I are not the best of friends. How do you rate a book of poetry? I bought this book as a reading challenge and also because in high school, my English teacher had us read The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, his favourite poem. Even now, over 40 years later, I still remember the line about crabs scuttling and my favourite, "I grow old, I wear my pant cuffs rolled", although that's not exactly how the line goes, it now appears.. lol. Anyway, what I did like about this small book of poe ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
T.S. Eliot, I am spectacularly ambivalent about. I greatly admire his verse, but I often find myself emotionally blindsided by his imagery. He often seems to be moving in directions perpendicular to those I move in, and while he offers ideas that I find valuable for coping with the modern world, he also offers ideas I find unpalatably modern. I hope some day to actually make it through "The Waste Land."
I haven't taken the time to look up the references. I might do so another day. The goal I had in mind while reading this was to try and "feel" what the words evoked, simply by allowing myself to let them wash over my thoughts, if you will. I really "enjoyed" the fifth part of "The Wasteland". I'm extremely curious to get some extra speculations or interpretations of what rock "represents".

All in all, for me, it was a peaceful read that not only allowed my mind to wander with the words but also
I don't know - I think I am a little too dull for poetry. Or T S Eliot is beyond my comprehension. I can't decide which.

All of the first poems jump here and there sobin the end you're not sure who is narrating nor what is being narrated in fact. Lots of use of different languages adds to the confusion.

I got on much better with the final section, Choruses From "The Rock", which describes man moving away from the church, from Sundays being devoted to pleasure trips, leisure time, etc, the declin
I enjoyed this a whole lot more than I expected to. There were of course some poems that I didn't enjoy as much as others *cough*the waste land*cough* but overall it was really enjoyable
The poems in this collection are arranged in a sort of progression of quality (in my mind). Prufrock is good, The Waste Land is insight, Ash Wednesday is beauty and The Rock is prophesy. I never knew I liked Mr. Eliot so much.
Karen Michele
It has been a long road back to an enjoyment of poetry from the confusion of attempting to analyze poetry in high school to just being absorbed in the beauty of the words and reading great poetry simply for enjoyment as an adult. Before reading Eliot’s collection, I was only familiar with Cats, the musical, and his Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats which is quite a different style from the poems in this collection. I did find one poem, though, that had familiar but not verbatim lines from the ...more
Shann Clemow
Alright, so we all knew that I have a major thing for T. S. Eliot anyway and this particular book is required reading for my course.

As per, I jumped right in with The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock because it is my absolute favourite and luckily one of the poems we have to read. Having now studied it, I don't understand it more because, honestly, there is no way in hell any of us are going to 100% understand Eliot and, if we did, many literary theorists would be out of a job. However, I do appre
I love this book, it was a hand-me-down from my oldest brother when he finished studying for his A Levels. Due to this is is well dog eared and penned. Not a line doesn't have a scribble of some sort marking down an interpretation of Eliot's literary prowess.

My favourite of the poems in the book is Portrait Of A Lady, something about this poem just speaks to me. I love the language used and the images conveyed. You can tell that every word Eliot has put forward to you has been carefully chosen a

T.S. Eliot is one of the greatest poets of all time. There are only a handful of poets that are even in the same league with him. I have said that when I drink tea, like T.S. Eliot, my entire life flashes before my eyes. It is the simple things that burn memories in our mind. Who speaks of memory and desire like Eliot? No one.

"April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain." (The Waste-Land,I.,The Burial of the Dead
Steve Woods
I have always loved the English language, probably because it is my mother tongue. I have had brief romances with Classical Chinese and Khmer, they have their special flavour, but for me the English language in the hands of a master is breathtaking. I first discovered this love as a child and it deepened when I was a teenager. There was a world within words that could touch the deepest places in me in ways that nothing else could. They gave me solace in my loneliness, they gave me comfort in my ...more
T.S.Eliot : Fact or Fiction?
I have to admit that up till now I had avoided him, he seemed so inaccessible and obscurant. Having more time on my hands, I decided that I would join battle with him once more.

After I had finished reading the poetry in this collection I was astonished. Apart from the last poem, The Chase, there did not seem to be a dud amongst them. The poems were not easy, in fact I needed to read each one three, four and more times to get an idea of what was happening in them. Howe

I've been thoroughly reading my copy of T.S Eliot's Selected Poems in the past day or two, and I must say I really do love his writing. I confess; for the most part his referencing is so obscure that 90% goes right over my head, but as I'm going to be actually studying the poems in detail and university, I've been doing some research as I go along (hence making me understand them and appreciate them a lot more).

His poems are, in essence, right up my street: often dark and melancholy; reminiscent
I purchased a small paperback T.S. Eliot Selected poems from a used book store and it doesn't have any barcodes for me to track but it was copy righted in 1930s. It;s a bright yellow book with a illustrated I am assuming Eliot in blue suit. Harbrace paper bound library hpl 21
95 cents it was back in 1930s.

I never really understood the hype for Eliot back in high school, but then again, what did I really know in high school right? Just clueless teenagers going by the book obtain the grades needed
Blimey; where do you start to review TS Eliot? Such rich texts and so demanding. The allusions come from many sometimes obscure sources, but the poems do stand alone, and reward individual and alternative interpretations. Lines have stayed with me from my first studying of TSE over 40 years ago. Particular favourites are 'Prufrock' of course and 'The Waste Land' Not so keen on the religious poems... But loved 'The Hippopotamus' who makes it into heaven! Hope I see him there.
Dave Maddock
Prufrock and The Waste Land are two of the best poems ever written. The rest is of various quality that doesn't begin to compare. Some, I'm thinking of the selections from The Rock here, are embarrassingly mundane crap you might hear recited on a Sunday morning as a congregational reading.
Simon Zohhadi
Read some of T.S. Eliot's poetry at school. My mother also had a copy of his selected poems. The Waste Land is probably his most famous poem and is one of my favourites. One of the best English language poems ever written. I still remember many of the images evoked. Ash Wednesday was another favourite.
I'm someone who is currently studying Eliot's poetry and I felt that this book was a great introduction to T. S. Eliot. It took me sometime before I could genuinely come to understand and appreciate his poetry and I still find some of his poetry seems to miss the mark as too dense and perhaps overly constructed while others have rich layers of imagery and allusion that reward a little effort and rereading with a sense of large and vivid meaning and depth.

Reading Eliot's serious poetry requires
Maxwell Leer
"The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,
And seeing that it was a soft October night,
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep."

MMM...I once hated this poem so much that my notes in high school read, "Stupidest poem ever!" My how time changes ones reading of this amazing poet.
Samantha Maloney
The greatest injustice anyone can do to Eliot is trying to read his poetry in linear or narrativized. His poetry, intentionally fragmented, acts almost as a Picasso painting to provide multiple perspectives and readings all at the same time. Truly a work of modernist art.
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T.S. Eliot International Summer School, 10-17 July 2010, London 1 2 May 26, 2010 04:39AM  
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Thomas Stearns Eliot was a poet, dramatist and literary critic. He received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1948 "for his outstanding, pioneer contribution to present-day poetry." He wrote the poems The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, The Waste Land, The Hollow Men, Ash Wednesday, and Four Quartets; the plays Murder in the Cathedral and The Cocktail Party; and the essay Tradition and the Individ ...more
More about T.S. Eliot...
The Waste Land and Other Poems The Waste Land Collected Poems, 1909-1962 The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock and Other Poems Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats

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“Let us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky”
“Unreal City,
Under the brown fog of a winter dawn,
A crowd flowed over London Bridge, so many,
I had not thought death had undone so many.
Sighs, short and infrequent, were exhaled,
And each man fixed his eyes before his feet.
Flowed up the hill and down King William Street,
To where St Mary Woolnoth kept the hours
With a dead sound on the final stock of nine.
There I saw one I knew, and stopped him crying: 'Stetson!
You, who were with me in the ships at Mylae!
That corpse you planted last year in your garden,
Has it begun to sprout? Will it bloom this year?
Or has the sudden frost disturbed its bed?
Oh keep the Dog far hence, that's friend to men,
Or with his nails he'll dig it up again!
You! hypocrite lecteur!-mon semblable,-mon frere!”
More quotes…