The Love Song of Alfred J. Prufock

The Love Song of Alfred J. Prufock

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The Love Song of Alfred J. Prufock


The Love Song of Alfred J. Prufock is a tale of a lonely man caught between an imaginary world and a realistic world. Within these two worlds he searches for someone to appreciate his true values and not have to put on the social mask that everyone wears amongst crowds. In this passage he wants to know if his efforts to make conversation amongst female company would pan out into something more than a one-night stand. He has been to many parties before and knows that there is a certain type of personality conformity that goes along with the social atmosphere. He does not like putting on this social mask to attract women and just wants someone to understand and appreciate him. The repetition of phrases using the words "worth while" portrays a sense of confusion for Prufock. His only question seems to be if putting on this type of mask will bring him a sense of love. He feels that it would only cause him to be misunderstood: "Would it have been worth while, If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl, And turning toward the window, should say: "That is not it at all, That is not what I meant, at all. (lines 106-110)." He then realizes that he may not be the most elite man but he has something to offer to somebody if he had the chance: "No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be; (line 111)." He admits that he is not perfect and actually can be the furthest from at times: "At times, indeed, almost ridiculous—Almost, at times, the Fool. (lines 118-119)." He realizes that his time is slowly fading as he gets older and it depresses back into his fantasy world: "I grow old ... I grow old ...(line120).". Prufock has fantasies of mermaids singing The mermaids symbolize real women and how his feelings of rejection by them. Similar to real women he feels that they will reject him as well and will not sing to him: "I do not think that they will sing to me (line 125)." This passage and poem ends with Prufock falling out of his fantasy world and back into reality: "Till human voices wake us, and we drown (line 131)."


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