But you could not stop and go back. There was a force, a momentum that took control and pushed you through the pages. Somewhere between activity and being swept downstream. Like playing solitaire on the Vegas clock, the cards keep turning. You couldn't stop if you wanted to. An automated carwash conveyor, but better. A solid hostess leading you through the room full of faces just as the drink settles in. Where are we? Page twenty-two of twenty-three. Eliot's poems can be appreciated for the overtaking rhythms, timing and color. They are like music and the great cartoons.
The Conscious Reading
This is the conscious response to the content (wit, humor, plot). This is like listening to the lyrics of songs. We all do it, and there's nothing much to say about it. With Eliot, there is plenty for this category as well.
The Beyond Conscious
This is the analysis and over-analysis of the text in relation to external connections. The "over" part is applicable the minute you a) read something you wouldn't have otherwise read and wish you hadn't or b) post messages on a chatroom dedicated to said topic c) are told by someone else that you sound pompous.
The raw material to support these claims.
To not over-analyze:
Oh, do not ask, "What is it?"
Let us go and make our visit.
A rhythm thing
This is the stop, repeat, like jazz thing.
'What is that noise?'
The wind under the door.
'What is that noise now?
Under the firelight, under the brush, her hair
Spread out in fiery points
Glowed into words, then would be savagely still.
Who among us (men) has not been here?
The time is now propitious, as he guesses,
The meal is ended, she is bored and tired,
Endeavours to engage her in caresses
Which are still unreproved, if undesired.
Flushed and decided, he assaults at one;
Exploring hands rencounter no defence;
His vanity requires no response,
And makes a welcome of indifference.
And who among us (women) has not been here?
'Trams and dusty trees
Highbury bore me. Richmond and Kew
Undid me. By Richmond I raised my knees
Supine on the floor of a narrow canoe.'
'My feet are 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?'
Attention to detail. Life is in the details. Some poets are not afraid.