Simplicity of Beauty: E.E. Cummings Poem Analysis

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Cole Ellicott
Poetry
Due: Monday, April 29th, 2013

The Simplistic Beauty of Life
Anyone lived in a pretty how town suggests that many people live their own lives without worrying about social interactions in an attempt to attain their own personal goals and live individually. Using the story of a town in which a couple demonstrates individuality, the citizens of the lonely town coexist while keeping to themselves. It is hard for those who are seen as different to live in a conformist society. Subjects such as love, life, time and death show up frequently to illustrate the many dimensions and viewpoints of the various characters in the poem. Slowly the protagonists are described as they grow up and love and live together, get married and eventually the husband dies and his wife continues living her life. Throughout the poem, the author, E.E. Cummings, uses a variety of themes and literary techniques. The author uses rhythm to form a smooth package, while the unusual diction attempts to disguise the simplicity of the tale. Finally, the metaphor of the passing time demonstrates the importance of living one’s own life as they see fit in order to maximize their achievements and happiness. All in all, the themes and devices elaborately used in “anyone lived in a pretty how town” combine together to form what is a very simple, yet well written story.

Right from the start it is clear that there is a catchy, silver-tongued rhythm in which the poem is best read. The rhyming helps to identify the unique quality of the rhythm. While not all stanzas are alike in rhythmic patterns, there is almost always one set of rhymes found within each stanza. For example, in the first stanza, “town” (1) and “down” (2) rhyme, although those are the only rhymes. In the second stanza, however, “small” and “all” rhyme as well as “same” and “rain”. This shows the different uses of rhymes to illustrate the poem’s variety of tones and viewpoints. In terms of the rhyming schemes...
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