E.E. Cummings Poem

Book Report/Review
Pages 5 (1255 words)
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E.E. Cummings' poems often were untitled and thus "anyone lived in a pretty how town" is merely tentatively titled by its first line. The poem, published in 1940, is an ambiguous work that details the life and death of a character called "Anyone", who both stands alone as an individual and remains representative of literally anyone in society.


The poem addresses one of the most major concerns for individuals in any society: the fear of dying alone and without touching the heart of another person.
The main character in the poem is a lively man: "he sang his didn't he danced his did" (Cummings); however it is clear that the people around him did not notice or care about his existence: "Women and men (both little and small) cared for anybody not at all" (Ibid.). This basic premise of the poem is very simple however it reflects the plight of many people in society who try their best to live life to the fullest and simply cannot hold the attention of anyone else who wishes to share it with them. Anyone is not an outwardly timid man, nor is he particularly a social outcast, it is simply that he does not have a partner in life and the fact that "someones married their everyones" (Cummings) merely highlights the fact that Anyone was alone in a world where everyone else seemed to find happiness with other people. Anyone is aptly named because he can literally be anyone, anywhere, who struggles to be appreciated and loved by one other special person (Baum 162).
Noone is an elusive character who it eventually becomes clear does not actually exist at all. She is presented as the admirer of Anyone, at first: "Noone loved him more by moreshe laughed his joy she cried his grief" (Cummings). ...
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