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What do lines thirteen through eighteen mean in "The Hollow Men" by T.S. ELIOT?THOSE...

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laibagrewal | Student, Grade 11 | eNoter

Posted September 30, 2012 at 10:29 AM via web

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What do lines thirteen through eighteen mean in "The Hollow Men" by T.S. ELIOT?

THOSE WHO HAVE CROSSED
WITH DIRECT EYES,TO THE DEATH'S OTHER KINGDOM
REMEMBER US-IF AT ALL-NOT AS LOST
VIOLENT SOULS,BUT ONLY
AS THE HOLLOW MEN
THE STUFFED MEN

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted September 30, 2012 at 4:01 PM (Answer #1)

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Lines thirteen through eighteen of "The Hollow Men" further reinforces the imagery of death and isolation created throughout the poem.  Overall, these lines suggest that the Hollow Men wish for remembrance, specifically not as "lost violent souls," but merely empty men.  Line thirteen "those who have crossed" could be interpreted as an allusion to the greek myth of Charon, in which the dead must cross the river Styx.  "Death's other kingdom" references a place in which the hollow men cannot gain admittance; their deeds and sins have left them by the river.  The reader could use these details to conclude that "Death's other kingdom" is in fact heaven, where people may view with "direct eyes" God's full glory.  This contrast reveals the Hollow Men to be blind, visionless to glory and evil alike, and numb.  Their existence has rendered them empty and unfulfilled.

 

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