E.E. Cummings was an extraordinary poet with an amazing mind. Cummings is easily one of the most influential poets on all of literature. His new way of writing truly changed the way others thought for years to come. His poetry is often overlooked by the world because of its strange style. Many critics talk bad about Cummings style even after his death. I believe that Cummings is one of the most overlooked poets ever.
His own personalistic style is what truly opened doors for many artists in the later years. Cummings odd life affected the way he wrote his poetry and the context of it. He was faced with many difficult situations in life, but he always turned to poetry. Cummings’ poetic style was affected by the events and people in his life. Cummings was a true genius when it came to poetry. He has written over 2,900 poems over the course of his lifetime.
Every poem has its very own aesthetic and meaning to it. Most of his poems are based on situations that he was placed in throughout his life. He uses not only the meaning of the words, but the appearance of them as well. He creates feeling and senses of emotion in his readers by changing the sentence length or spacing. Cummings was able to connect to others like no one else could. Many believed it was because of how he relates modern culture to nature in equal measures of openness (Terblanche 34). Cummings will take a simple subject and make the reader feel the emotion of that subject. His poetry is all very different and can be broken down into many different meanings. He provides his readers a sense of escape and freedom. Many others at the time were turning to anger but cummings offers alternative ways of evoking emotion (Terblanche 44). Cummings was destined for poetry ever since a young child. He was the first born to Edward Cummings and Rebecca Clarke. His parents created a very odd lifestyle for a rebellious poet like Cummings. His father was an instructor of sociology at Harvard while being a well-known Unitarian. At a young age, Cummings was surrounded by traditionalistic college culture. He had a very elite lifestyle from an early age. At the age of eight he began writing a poem every single day. Cummings’ father and mother were very supportive of his interests in poetry. He later went on to attend Harvard University from 1911 to 1915. Cummings found an utter fascination with cubism. He mainly focused on the works of Pablo Picasso. He even began incorporating this style into his own poetry. His very first poems ever published appeared in Eight Harvard Poets during the year 1917. These poems only show the beginnings of his personal idiosyncratic style. Cummings later moved to New York to work with a book company, before quitting to pursue his poetry full time. During this time, World War I was in its peak. Cummings decided to volunteer for the Norton Ambulance services. He was sent to work in Paris, where he fell in love with the city’s lifestyle. During this stint, Cummings served four months at an internment camp in Normandy. They kept him detained for treason until he was released with the help of his father. He returned to New York with his father as a changed man. After only a few months back home, he was drafted in 1918. Lucky for Cummings, he only spent one year at Camp Danvers in Massachusetts. Throughout the next ten years Cummings began venturing through Europe living his life as a poet. One of the most famous poems by Cummings was known as Leaf. This poem was truly loved and hated by many. This poem is only a few words long, however the effect of the poem on the reader is still very powerful. There is no true, hidden meaning behind this poem because it is up to the reader to discover. Cumming was different in the way he playfully manipulated phrases and words into poems (Rydholm). The short length of this poem really causes the readers to feel the emotion from the poem. Many readers find themselves longing for more after reading the short poem. He does not complete several words in the poem to show his readers a sense of loneliness. Overall, this poem is a very sad and lonely poem. I believe that his life was filled with its own loneliness and his poetry is how he puts it into words. Cummings poetry was often ignored throughout his life by many different people. There were coming up with countless reasons as to why Cummings poetry was not correct. Cummings was never phased by these critics, as he kept being himself. Nowadays people know Cummings is not well known because of the lack of attention paid to Cummings by ecologically orientated critics (Wylie). If the critics weren’t criticizing Cummings, they were completely ignoring his work. Smelstor stated that critics cited Cummings as either a significant modernist or a rigid antimodernist (Smelstor). Cummings always kept strong and never let critics words affect his way of writing. Cummings style was known
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