An Interpretation of E.E. Cummings' Anyone Lived in a Pretty How Town

790 Words 4 Pages
An Interpretation of E.E. Cummings' Anyone Lived in a Pretty How Town

E.E. Cummings (1894-1962) is an American Poet whose works are some of the harder ones to understand. That's what Cummings is known for, his typography, language, punctuation, and his use of capital letters to give words special meanings. It has been stated that he has his own language known as Cummingsian. Cummings has done a lot of experimentation with language along with other poets during the Modernist era.

Not only was Cummings an artistic writer and poet but he was an accomplished painter as well. Born in Cambridge Massachusetts, Cummings was a graduate of Harvard (1915) and was a volunteer ambulance driver in WWI. The French made him a prisoner of war and
…show more content…
The way he uses capitalization only when he wants to give special meaning to words; the way he uses his own spelling and punctuation style; is said to be due to the experimental stage of the Modernist era and also because of some anger he felt due to his experiences in the war.

In the Poem "anyone lived in a pretty how town," there are three groups of people in the town: the individuals, the collectives, and the children. Anyone, who is the man and noone, who is the woman, are the individuals who fall in love. The collectives (someones and everyones) are people in the town who live a routine humdrum life. The individuals are the only group in the town capable of falling in love. Where as the collectives act collectively and so they lose their identity. "In other words, the people's deeds (sowings) always result the same...existence repeats itself." (Tero Valkonen Pp.4)

Children in the town are the only ones who can see anyone and noone falling in love. As with everyone else in the town, once the children grow up, they are also incapable of love. The children are actually the "busy people" at the end that bury the "individuals" side by side. The mentioning of the seasons has significance showing the passing of time; with the passing of time the children grow up and when the children grow up they lose their innocence... "and only the snow can begin to explain how children are apt to
Open Document