Collected Poems, 1909-1962 Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Whom does the speaker of "Four Quartets: The Dry Salvages" think is a "strong brown god"?

2. What sort of game are the women in "Fragments of an Aristophanic Melodrama" playing?

3. What do the seams need in "Marina"?

4. What reality does the poem attempt to convey behind the impressive display of the "Triumphal March"?

5. What is "more affectionate than hate" in "Lines for an Old Man"?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do love and desire contrast with one another in "Burnt Norton"?

2. What is the apparent distinction between the attitude towards Christmas of the child and the childish in "The Cultivation of Christmas Trees"?

3. Why do the "cycles of Heaven in twenty centuries," spoken of in the first chorus from 'The Rock,' bring man further away from God and closer to dust?

4. Why should the innocent approach of the child to Christmas not be lost, according to "The Cultivation of Christmas Trees"?

5. What are the women doing with the card game in the "Fragment of a Prologue"?

6. What is the nature of the speakers "affliction" in "Eyes that last I saw in tears"?

7. What is the "conscious art practiced with natural ease" of which Eliot writes in "To Walter de la Mare"?

8. What characterizes the tone of the poem in "Difficulties of a Statesman"?

9. What is a possible interpretation of the significance of the "Midwinter spring" described in Part I of "Little Gidding"?

10. How was the speaker awoken in "The wind sprang up at four o'clock"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Few poems, if any, have had as profound an impact on the world of poetry and literature as "The Waste Land", and yet its interpretation remains a subject of great dispute. In your own critical analysis, provide an interpretation of this complex and multi-layered poem. What is the significance of the major images and characters in the poem? What is meant by the often obscure and cryptic language? What is the relationship of the five parts to one another? What is the significance of the frequent inclusion of water as a symbolic figure in the poem? What is the overall, coherent signification of the poem?

Essay Topic 2

Important to many of Eliot's poems are the devices of simile, metaphor, and analogy. Considering a wide selection of his poems, craft an analytical essay on these poetic devices. What are they? How do they aid in the creation of poetic imagery and poetic meaning? What are some specific instances of each? How do these specific instances aid the reader in both visualizing the poem's literal significance and its deeper meaning?

Essay Topic 3

His first major poem, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock", is a commentary on the modern world and in particular on the modern man. Provide your own interpretation of this poem in an analytically interpretive essay. Who is Prufrock? What is Prufrock's status in society? What troubles the mind, thoughts, and desires of Prufrock? What characterizes Prufrock as a whole? How is Prufrock a symbol of modernity?

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