In the poem, "Pathedy of Manners," discuss how such a general statement about life seems to encapsulate the poem's protagonist so well.

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susan3smith | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

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The poem "Pathedy of Manners" concludes with a general statement about the subject of the poem's life:

Her meanings lost in manners, she will walk

Alone in brilliant circles to the end.

In this poem the subject of the poem is "brilliant and adored" as a young lady.   As such a woman, she has enormous potential.  She chooses to use this potential, though, to create the life that would be deemed a success for a woman of the 1930s.  She learns the types of crystal, she can spot authentic pearls, she is skilled at small talk.  She marries the man her family would approve of, and the couple produce the requisite children.  But she never really develops her mind, never holds real convictions of her own, nor develops any true friendships, and spends her time trying to "kill time" in empty activities.  She winds up in brilliant empty circles following the manners of the time.



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