The Waste Land

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The Waste Land Looking into the heart of light, the silence. Öd’ und leer das Meer. Madame Sosostris, famous clairvoyante, Had a bad cold, nevertheless Is known to be the wisest woman in Europe, With a wicked pack of cards. Here, said she, Is your card, the drowned Phoenician Sailor, (Those are pearls that were his eyes. Look!) Here is Belladonna, the Lady of the Rocks, The lady of situations. Here is the man with three staves, and here the Wheel, And here is the one-eyed merchant, and this car
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  The Waste Land  I. THE BURIAL OF THE DEADAPRIL is the cruellest month, breedingLilacs out of the dead land, mixingMemory and desire, stirringDull roots with spring rain.Winter kept us warm, covering 5  Earth in forgetful snow, feedingA little life with dried tubers.Summer surprised us, coming over theStarnbergerseeWith a shower of rain; we stopped in the colonnade,And went on in sunlight, into the Hofgarten, 10  And drank coffee, and talked for an hour.  Bin gar keine Russin, stamm’ aus Litauen, echt  deutsch.  And when we were children, staying at the archduke‘s,   My cousin‘s, he took me out on a sled,  And I was frightened. He said, Marie, 15  Marie, hold on tight. And down we went.In the mountains, there you feel free.I read, much of the night, and go south in the winter.What are the roots that clutch, what branches growOut of this stony rubbish? Son of man, 20  You cannot say, or guess, for you know onlyA heap of broken images, where the sun beats,And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket norelief,And the dry stone no sound of water. OnlyThere is shadow under this red rock, 25  (Come in under the shadow of this red rock),And I will show you something different from eitherYour shadow at morning striding behind youOr your shadow at evening rising to meet you;I will show you fear in a handful of dust. 30   Frisch weht der Wind     Der Heimat zu,    Mein Irisch Kind,   Wo weilest du?   ―You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;   35   They called me the hyacinth girl.‖    —  Yet when we came back, late, from the Hyacinthgarden,Your arms full, and your hair wet, I could notSpeak, and my eyes failed, I was neitherLiving nor dead, and I knew nothing, 40  Looking into the heart of light, the silence. Öd’ und leer das Meer.  Madame Sosostris, famous clairvoyante,Had a bad cold, neverthelessIs known to be the wisest woman in Europe, 45  With a wicked pack of cards. Here, said she,Is your card, the drowned Phoenician Sailor,(Those are pearls that were his eyes. Look!)Here is Belladonna, the Lady of the Rocks,The lady of situations. 50  Here is the man with three staves, and here theWheel,And here is the one-eyed merchant, and this card,Which is blank, is something he carries on his back,Which I am forbidden to see. I do not findThe Hanged Man. Fear death by water. 55  I see crowds of people, walking round in a ring.Thank you. If you see dear Mrs. Equitone,Tell her I bring the horoscope myself:One must be so careful these days.Unreal City, 60  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. 65  Flowed up the hill and down King William Street,To where Saint Mary Woolnoth kept the hoursWith a dead sound on the final stroke of nine.There I saw one I knew, and stopped him, crying ―Stetson!  You who were with me in the ships at Mylae! 70  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!   75  You! hypocrite lecteur!  —  mon semblable,  —  mon rère!”  II. A GAME OF CHESSThe Chair she sat in, like a burnished throne,Glowed on the marble, where the glassHeld up by standards wrought with fruited vinesFrom which a golden Cupidon peeped out 80  (Another hid his eyes behind his wing)Doubled the flames of sevenbranched candelabraReflecting light upon the table asThe glitter of her jewels rose to meet it,From satin cases poured in rich profusion; 85  In vials of ivory and coloured glassUnstoppered, lurked her strange synthetic perfumes,Unguent, powdered, or liquid  —  troubled, confused  And drowned the sense in odours; stirred by the airThat freshened from the window, these ascended 90  In fattening the prolonged candle-flames,Flung their smoke into the laquearia,Stirring the pattern on the coffered ceiling.Huge sea-wood fed with copperBurned green and orange, framed by the colouredstone, 95  In which sad light a carvèd dolphin swam.Above the antique mantel was displayedAs though a window gave upon the sylvan sceneThe change of Philomel, by the barbarous kingSo rudely forced; yet there the nightingale 100  Filled all the desert with inviolable voiceAnd still she cried, and still the world pursues, ―Jug Jug‖ to dirty ears.  And other withered stumps of timeWere told upon the walls; staring forms 105  Leaned out, leaning, hushing the room enclosed.Footsteps shuffled on the stair,Under the firelight, under the brush, her hairSpread out in fiery pointsGlowed into words, then would be savagely still. 110   ―My nerves are bad to -night. Yes, bad. Stay withme.Speak to me. Why do you never speak? Speak.What are you thinking of? What thinking? What? I never know what you are thinking. Think.‖   I think we are in rats‘ alley   115  Where the dead men lost their bones. ―What is that noise?‖  The wind under the door. ―What is that noise now? What is the wind doing?‖  Nothing again nothing. 120   ―Do  You know nothing? Do you see nothing? Do youremember  Nothing?‖  I rememberThose are pearls that were his eyes. 125   ―Are you alive, or not? Is there nothing in your head?‖  ButO O O O that Shakespeherian Rag  —    It‘s so elegant  So intelligent 130   ―What shall I do now? What shall I do?  I shall rush out as I am, and walk the streetWith my hair down, so. What shall we do to-morrow? What shall we ever do?‖  The hot water at ten. 135  And if it rains, a closed car at four.And we shall play a game of chess,Pressing lidless eyes and waiting for a knock uponthe door. When Lil‘s husband got demobbed, I said,   I didn‘t mince my words, I said to her myself,   140  HURRY UP PLEASE ITS TIME  Now Albert‘s coming back, make yourself a bit smart. He‘ll want to know what you done with that moneyhe gave youTo get yourself some teeth. He did, I was there.You have them all out, Lil, and get a nice set, 145   He said, I swear, I can‘t bear to look at you.   And no more can‘t I, I said, and think of poor  Albert, He‘s been in the army four years, he wants a goodtime, And if you don‘t give it him, there‘s others will, I said. Oh is there, she said. Something o‘ that, I said.   150   Then I‘ll know who to thank, she said, and give me a straight look.HURRY UP PLEASE ITS TIME If you don‘t like it you can get on with it, I said,   Others can pick and choose if you can‘t.   But if Albert makes off, it won‘t be for lack of  telling. 155  You ought to be ashamed, I said, to look so antique.(And her only thirty-one.) I can‘t help it, she said, pulling a long face,   It‘s them pills I took, to bring it off, she said.   (She‘s had five already, and nearly died of young George.) 160   The chemist said it would be alright, but I‘ve never  been the same.You are a proper fool, I said. Well, if Albert won‘t leave you alone, there it is, I said, What you get married for if you don‘t want children?HURRY UP PLEASE ITS TIME 165  Well, that Sunday Albert was home, they had a hotgammon,And they asked me in to dinner, to get the beauty of it hot  —   HURRY UP PLEASE ITS TIMEHURRY UP PLEASE ITS TIMEGoonight Bill. Goonight Lou. Goonight May.Goonight. 170  Ta ta. Goonight. Goonight.Good night, ladies, good night, sweet ladies, goodnight, good night.  III. THE FIRE SERMON The river‘s tent is broken: the last fingers of leaf   Clutch and sink into the wet bank. The windCrosses the brown land, unheard. The nymphs aredeparted. 175  Sweet Thames, run softly, till I end my song.The river bears no empty bottles, sandwich papers,Silk handkerchiefs, cardboard boxes, cigarette endsOr other testimony of summer nights. The nymphsare departed.And their friends, the loitering heirs of citydirectors; 180  Departed, have left no addresses. By the waters of Leman I sat down and wept…  Sweet Thames, run softly till I end my song,Sweet Thames, run softly, for I speak not loud orlong.But at my back in a cold blast I hear 185  The rattle of the bones, and chuckle spread from earto ear.A rat crept softly through the vegetationDragging its slimy belly on the bank While I was fishing in the dull canalOn a winter evening round behind the gashouse. 190   Musing upon the king my brother‘s wreck   And on the king my father‘s death before him.  White bodies naked on the low damp groundAnd bones cast in a little low dry garret, Rattled by the rat‘s foot only, year to year.   195  But at my back from time to time I hearThe sound of horns and motors, which shall bringSweeney to Mrs. Porter in the spring.O the moon shone bright on Mrs. PorterAnd on her daughter 200  They wash their feet in soda water  Et, O ces voix d’enfants, chantant dans la coupole!  Twit twit twitJug jug jug jug jug jug So rudely forc‘d.   205  TereuUnreal CityUnder the brown fog of a winter noonMr Eugenides, the Smyrna merchantUnshaven, with a pocket full of currants 210  C. i. f. London: documents at sight,Asked me in demotic FrenchTo luncheon at the Cannon Street HotelFollowed by a week-end at the Metropole.At the violet hour, when the eyes and back  215  Turn upward from the desk, when the human enginewaitsLike a taxi throbbing waiting,I Tiresias, though blind, throbbing between twolives,Old man with wrinkled female breasts, can seeAt the violet hour, the evening hour that strives 220  Homeward, and brings the sailor home from sea,The typist home at tea-time, clears her breakfast,lightsHer stove, and lays out food in tins.Out of the window perilously spread Her drying combinations touched by the sun‘s last rays, 225  On the divan are piled (at night her bed)Stockings, slippers, camisoles, and stays.I Tiresias, old man with wrinkled dugsPerceived the scene, and foretold the rest  —   I too awaited the expected guest. 230  He, the young man carbuncular, arrives,A small house- agent‘s clerk, with one bold stare,  One of the low on whom assurance sitsAs a silk hat on a Bradford millionaire.The time is now propitious, as he guesses, 235  The meal is ended, she is bored and tired,Endeavours to engage her in caressesWhich still are unreproved, if undesired.Flushed and decided, he assaults at once;Exploring hands encounter no defence; 240  His vanity requires no response,And makes a welcome of indifference.(And I Tiresias have foresuffered allEnacted on this same divan or bed;I who have sat by Thebes below the wall 245  And walked among the lowest of the dead.)Bestows one final patronizing kiss, And gropes his way, finding the stairs unlit…  She turns and looks a moment in the glass,Hardly aware of her departed lover; 250  Her brain allows one half-formed thought to pass: ―Well now that‘s done: and I‘m glad it‘s over.‖  When lovely woman stoops to folly andPaces about her room again, alone,She smoothes her hair with automatic hand, 255  And puts a record on the gramophone. ―This music crept by me upon the waters‖  And along the Strand, up Queen Victoria Street.O City City, I can sometimes hearBeside a public bar in Lower Thames Street, 260  The pleasant whining of a mandolineAnd a clatter and a chatter from withinWhere fishmen lounge at noon: where the wallsOf Magnus Martyr holdInexplicable splendour of Ionian white and gold. 265  The river sweats  Oil and tarThe barges driftWith the turning tideRed sails 270  WideTo leeward, swing on the heavy spar.The barges washDrifting logsDown Greenwich reach 275  Past the Isle of Dogs.Weialala leiaWallala leialalaElizabeth and LeicesterBeating oars 280  The stern was formedA gilded shellRed and goldThe brisk swellRippled both shores 285  South-west windCarried down streamThe peal of bellsWhite towersWeialala leia 290  Wallala leialala ―Trams and dusty trees.  Highbury bore me. Richmond and KewUndid me. By Richmond I raised my knees Supine on the floor of a narrow canoe.―   295   ―My feet are at Moorgate, and my heart  Under my feet. After the event He wept. He promised ‗a new start.‘  I made no comment. What should I resent?‖   ―On Margate Sands.   300  I can connectNothing with nothing.The broken finger-nails of dirty hands.My people humble people who expect  Nothing.‖   305  la laTo Carthage then I cameBurning burning burning burningO Lord Thou pluckest me outO Lord Thou pluckest 310  burningIV. DEATH BY WATERPhlebas the Phoenician, a fortnight dead,Forgot the cry of gulls, and the deep seas swellAnd the profit and loss.A current under sea 315  Picked his bones in whispers. As he rose and fellHe passed the stages of his age and youthEntering the whirlpool.Gentile or JewO you who turn the wheel and look to windward, 320  Consider Phlebas, who was once handsome and tallas you.V. WHAT THE THUNDER SAIDAfter the torch-light red on sweaty facesAfter the frosty silence in the gardensAfter the agony in stony placesThe shouting and the crying 325  Prison and place and reverberationOf thunder of spring over distant mountainsHe who was living is now deadWe who were living are now dyingWith a little patience 330  Here is no water but only rock Rock and no water and the sandy roadThe road winding above among the mountainsWhich are mountains of rock without waterIf there were water we should stop and drink  335  Amongst the rock one cannot stop or think Sweat is dry and feet are in the sandIf there were only water amongst the rock Dead mountain mouth of carious teeth that cannotspitHere one can neither stand nor lie nor sit 340  There is not even silence in the mountainsBut dry sterile thunder without rainThere is not even solitude in the mountainsBut red sullen faces sneer and snarlFrom doors of mud-cracked housesIf there were water 345  And no rock If there were rock And also waterAnd waterA spring 350  A pool among the rock If there were the sound of water onlyNot the cicadaAnd dry grass singingBut sound of water over a rock  355  Where the hermit-thrush sings in the pine treesDrip drop drip drop drop drop dropBut there is no waterWho is the third who walks always beside you?When I count, there are only you and I together 360  
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