Ee Cummings The Return Analysis

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EE Cummings was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1894 to two Unitarian-Worshipping parents. Cummings was particularly close to his father, who worked as a Unitarian Minister, and this had a large effect on his outlook on life and in his work (Riviere et al, The Poetry Archive). Cummings was profoundly affected by Ezra Pounds poem The Return. He admired the way it was written and its misuse of grammar, syntax and irregular structure served as inspiration for what would later be known as a Cummings trademark of no capital letters and clever placement of punctuation (Frazee, The Dictionary of Unitarian and Universal Bibliography). In order to understand how this poem estranges the familiar, an analysis of Cummings religious understandings in relation to the structure of the poem is vital.…show more content…
However, the meaning of the poem becomes clear once this irregularity is overlooked, once the entire poem is read and once the reader understands the approach the author takes on the poem. This is when the author gifts reader with deeper meaning makes way for a more conceptual and overall understanding of the poem.

Cummings followed the religion of Unitarianism, a form of Christianity, and this may give clues as to the strange way in which he structured his poetry. The title itself is ambiguous in stating that “Spring is like a Perhaps Hand”. One tends to ponder on what the author meant by calling Spring a “perhaps hand”. This meaning, however, becomes clear in lines ten to eleven which explains, by capitalising the word “Hand” and moving it to the next line, that Spring is simply a personified hand. At this point, the inevitable question arises as to who’s hand it is? Is it Spring’s hand? The title definitely conceals itself in the beginning, only revealing its true figurative meaning as one reads on. As a point of explanation, it is common religious knowledge to capitalise nouns and pronouns relating to God, for example, when referring to God as “he”, the word must be
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