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Overture to a Dance of Locomotives Summary
William Carlos Williams

Everything you need to understand or teach Overture to a Dance of Locomotives by William Carlos Williams.

  • Overture to a Dance of Locomotives Summary & Study Guide

Overture to a Dance of Locomotives Summary

Introduction

Written at the end of 1916 and the beginning of 1917, "Overture to a Dance of Locomotives" remains one of Williams' most intriguing poems, as it signifies a number of different things to various readers. Although the poem did not appear in print until 1921 in his collection of poems Sour Grapes, the poem did make an appearance when Williams read it in New York City at the 1917 Independents Exhibition held by the Society of American Artists in the spring of that year.

The occasion of the poem is the hustle and bustle of people, porters, and passenger trains in Pennsylvania Station in New York City. Porters yell train numbers and times, passengers rush to the correct track to get on their trains, and the trains themselves smoke and churn in the station, anxious to put their modernist muscle to work. But rather than represent this scene as chaos, Williams suggests that...

(read more from the Study Guide)

Study Pack

The Overture to a Dance of Locomotives Study Pack contains about 44 pages of study material in 8 products, including:

Overture to a Dance of Locomotives Study Guide

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