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e e cummings

¤  The Enormous Room

Edward Estlin Cummings (1894 – 1962), the author of the book, was suspected of treason while volunteering in France during 1st World War, and put, without any due reason, to prison camp in the town of La Ferté-Macé in Orne, Normandy.

Those several months influenced him a lot and all those unique characters he met there, in the «Enormous room», became part of the plot of this brilliantly written masterpiece. Sometimes merry, sometimes maddening… but always fascinating. Enjoy the sense of humor and intelligence of its author.

¶  Click  for this gem of American prose  ↓

•→http://net.lib.byu.edu/~rdh7/wwi/memoir/cummings/roomTC.htm

E.E. Cummings _ A poet, playwright, novelist, and painter  ↓

e_room

Monsieur le Ministre asked: ‘Was it true (a) that B. and I were always together and (b) preferred the company of the attached Frenchmen to that of our fellow-Americans?—to which I answered in the affirmative. Why? he wanted to know. So I explained that we felt that the more French we knew and the better we knew the French, the better for us; expatiating a bit on the necessity for a complete mutual understanding of the Latin and Anglo-Saxon races if victory was to be won.

Again the rosette nodded with approbation.

Monsieur le Ministre may have felt that he was losing his case, for he played his trump card immediately: ‘You are aware that your friend has written to friends in America and to his family very bad letters.’ ‘I am not,’ I said.

In a flash I understood the motivation of Monsieur’s visit to Vingt-et-Un: the French censor had intercepted some of B.’s letters, and had notified Mr. A. and Mr. A.’s translator, both of whom had thankfully testified to the bad character of B. and (wishing very naturally to get rid of both of us at once) had further averred that we were always together and that consequently I might properly be regarded as a suspicious character. Whereupon they had received instructions to hold us at the section until Noyon could arrive and take charge—hence our failure to obtain our long overdue permission.

‘Your friend,’ said Monsieur in English, ‘is here a short while ago. I ask him if he is up in the aeroplane flying over Germans will he drop the bombs on Germans and he say no, he will not drop any bombs on Germans.’

By this falsehood (such as it happened to be) I confess that I was nonplussed. In the first place, I was at the time innocent of third-degree methods. Secondly: I remembered that, a week or so since, B., myself and another American in the section had written a letter which, on the advice of the sous-lieutenant who accompanied Vingt-et-Un as translator, we had addressed to the Under-Secretary of State in French Aviation, asking that inasmuch as the American Government was about to take over the Red Cross (which meant that all the sections sanitaires would be affiliated with the American, and no longer with the French Army) we three at any rate might be allowed to continue our association with the French by enlisting in l’Esquadrille Lafayette. One of the ‘dirty Frenchmen’ had written the letter for us in the finest language imaginable, from data supplied by ourselves.

‘You write a letter, your friend and you, for French aviation?’

Here I corrected him: there were three of us, and why didn’t he have the third culprit arrested, might I ask? But he ignored this little digression, and wanted to know: Why not American aviation?—to which I answered: Ah, but as my friend has so often said to me, the French are after all the finest people in the world.

This double-blow stopped Noyon dead, but only for a second.

‘Did your friend write this letter?’—‘No,’ I answered truthfully.—‘Who did write it?’—‘One of the Frenchmen attached to the section.’—‘What is his name?’—‘I’m sure I don’t know,’ I answered; mentally swearing that whatever might happen to me, the scribe should not suffer. ‘At my urgent request,’ I added.

Relapsing into French, Monsieur asked me if I would have any hesitation in dropping bombs on Germans? I said no, I wouldn’t. And why did I suppose I was fitted to become aviator? Because, I told him, I weighed 135 pounds and could drive any kind of auto or motor-cycle. (I hoped he would make me prove this assertion, in which case I promised myself that I wouldn’t stop till I got to Munich; but no.)

‘Do you mean to say that my friend was not only trying to avoid serving in the American Army but was contemplating treason as well?’ I asked.

‘Well, that would be it, would it not?’ he answered coolly. Then, leaning forward once more, he fired at me: ‘Why did you write to an official so high?’

At this I laughed outright. ‘Because the excellent sous-lieutenant who translated when Mr. Lieutenant A. couldn’t understand advised us to do so.’

Following up this sortie, I addressed the moustache: ‘Write this down in the testimony—that I, here present, refuse utterly to believe that my friend is not as sincere a lover of France and the French people as any man living!—Tell him to write it,’ I commanded Noyon stonily. But Noyon shook his head, saying: ‘We have the very best reason for supposing your friend to be no friend of France.’ I answered: ‘That is not my affair. I want my opinion of my friend written in; do you see?’ ‘That’s reasonable,’ the rosette murmured; and the moustache wrote it down.

‘Why do you think we volunteered?’ I asked sarcastically, when the testimony was complete.

↓  «r-p-o-p-h-e-s-s-a-g-r «  ↑

grasshopper

•   i carry your heart with me  [i carry it in]  ↓

i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
                                                      i fear
no fate (for you are my fate,my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)
•   it is at moments  ↓  [voice = Robert Wyatt]

it is at moments after i have dreamed
of the rare entertainment of your eyes,
when(being fool to fancy)i have deemed
with your peculiar mouth my heart made wise;
at moments when the glassy darkness holds
the genuine apparition of your smile

(it was through tears always)and silence moulds
such strangeness as was mine a little while;
moments when my once more illustrious arms
are filled with fascination, when my breast
wears the intolerant brightness of your charms:
one pierced moment whiter than the rest
—turning from the tremendous lie of sleep
i watch the roses of the day grow deep.

◊→   ‘May I Feel Said He’   ⇓

May I

⇒9⇐

→ http://hellopoetry.com/-e-e-cummings/⇐

e-e-cummings-erotic-drawings⇐

⇐  ⇐

•→«She being brand new»[poem]

•→«I like my body» ⇔ [poem]

•→  ‘You are tired’  ⇔ [poem]

Lady, i will touch you with my mind.
Touch you and touch and touch
until you give
me suddenly a smile,shyly obscene

(lady i will
touch you with my mind.)Touch
you,that is all,

lightly and you utterly will become
with infinite ease

the poem which i do not write.

∇  «One Handed Pushup»  ↓  [read by Jack Palance]

∴  «Maggie And Milly And Molly And May»  ⇓  by Natalie Merchant  [2010]

Maggie and Milly , Molly and May
They went down to the beach one day to play

And Maggie discovered a shell that sang
So sweetly she couldn’t remember her troubles,
Maggie and Milly, Molly and May . . .

Milly befriended a stranded star
Whose rays five languid fingers were;
Maggie and Milly, Molly and May . . .

And Molly was chased by a horrible thing
Which raced sideways while blowing . . . (bubbles: and)

May came home with a smooth round stone
As small as a world and as large as alone.

For whatever we lose (like a you or a me)
It’s always ourselves we find in the sea

∇    Poem  LVI   ⇓

lady will you come with me into
the extremely little house of
my mind.   Clocks strike.      The

moon’s round,through the window

as you see and really i have no
servants.    We could almost live

at the top of these stairs, there’s a free
room.     We almost could go (you
and i) into a together whitely big
there is but if so or so

slowly i opened the window a
most thinyness,the moon(with white wig
and polished buttons) would take you away

–and all the clocks would run down the next day.

⇓  ‘crazy jay blue’

crazy jay blue)
demon laughshriek
ing at me
your scorn of easily
 
hatred of timid
& loathing for(dull all
regular righteous
comfortable)unworlds
 
thief crook cynic
(swimfloatdrifting
fragment of heaven)
trickstervillain
 
raucous rogue &
vivid voltaire
you beautiful anarchist
(i salute thee

⇓  ‘since feeling is first’

Since feeling is first Who pays any attention
To the syntax of things
Will never wholly kiss you;
Wholly to be a fool
While Spring is in the world My blood approves,
And kisses are a better fate
Than wisdom Lady i swear by all flowers.
Don’t cry
The best gesture of my brain is less than
Your eyelids’ flutter which says
We are for each other: then
Laugh, leaning back in my arms
For life’s not a paragraph
And death i think is no parenthesis

•→ ‘Somewhere I Have Never Traveled’  ⇔ [read]

•→  ‘pity this busy monster, manunkind’  ⇔ [read]

Φ    ‘so shy shy shy’  ↓  Carla Kihlstedt sings along e.e. cummings

So shy, shy, shy, and with the look that very boldest men
Can scarcely dare to meet, no matter how he’ll try to try.

So wrong, wrong, wrong and with the smile at which the rightest men
Remembers there’s such a thing like spring and wonders why.

So gay, gay, gay and with a wisdom that the wisest men
Will partly understand all that the wisest men have liked.

So young, young, young and with the something makes the oldest men,
Whoever he may be, the only man who never died.

♦  Tin Hat   ⇓ «2 little whos» [«the rain is a handsome animal»]

2 little whos

(he and she)

under are this

wonderful tree

smiling stand

(all realms of where

and when beyond)

now and here (far from a grown

-up i&you- ful world of known)

who and who

(2 little ams

and over them this

aflame with dreams

incredible is)

Hanna_sisters

The poem on page 112

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully, mysteriously) her first rose

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens; only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands

e e cummings

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