E. E. Cummings' poem "since feeling is first" is a poem which shows how emotions dictate people's actions and why the narrator thinks they should. The poem implies that to follow one's heart is better than following one's mind, yet, at the same time the poem is the narrator's analysis of why emotion comes before thought. The last line of the poem brings a twist on theme that the rest of the poem seems to be following. It speaks of death and of thought, rather than of life and emotion, showing that death is something that should not be ignored in life, and that thought is important even with the domination of feeling. Cummings enhances these themes by using the literary elements of diction and tone, irony, and setting and situation.
The poem says that "since feeling is first" (line 1) the one who pays attention to the meaning of things will never truly embrace. The poem states that it is better to be a fool, or to live by emotions while one is young. The narrator declares that his "blood approves" (line 7) showing that his heart approves of living by feeling, and that the fate of feeling enjoyment is better than one of "wisdom" (line 9) or learning. He tells his "lady" (line 10) not to cry, showing that he is speaking to her. He believes that she can make him feel better than anything he could think of, because her "eyelids" (line 12) say that they are "for each other" (line 13). Then, after all she's said and thought, his "lady" forgets the seriousness of thought and leans into the narrator's arms because life is not a "paragraph" (line 15), meaning that life is brief. The last line in the poem is a statement which means that death is no small thi...
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...ing someone who appears to be close to him. The poem could have been inspired by a scene similar to the one described in the poem as something that more people should follow, else than one close to the poet.
Through his verse, E. E. Cummings shows readers his natural inclination towards living through emotions and his justification of why his way of living comes "first" (line 1) to living through thought. Living with his heart feels better to E. E. Cummings in comparison to living through his mind, and so it is better. He has also determined that "the best gesture of his brain" (line 11) could never live up to the actions of love or true feeling. Yet, "since feeling comes first" (line 1) the thought must come second. This poet has shown readers that he has an understanding of life, but he could not begin to understand without the gift of thought.
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