Make a list of all the questions in "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock," and group them into catigories such as time, action, and/or death.

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booboosmoosh eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Prufrock's comments and questions regarding death are as follows:

"'Do I dare?' and, 'Do I dare?' 
Time to turn back and descend the stair, 
With a bald spot in the middle of my hair—                                
[They will say: 'How his hair is growing thin!'] 
My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin, 
My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin— 
[They will say: 'But how his arms and legs are thin!'] 
Do I dare 
Disturb the universe? 
In a minute there is time 
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse."

The above quote (and questions) reflect the speaker's aging, his movement toward death, where he asks if, at this late time of his life, he dares to change things, "disturb the universe"—even while asserting that it only takes one minute to change everything, hoping that it does not matter that it is so "late."

"Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in upon a platter" is an allusion to the death of John the Baptist.

"And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker:" the "eternal Footman" is the personification of death.

And again...

"To roll it toward some overwhelming question, 
To say: 'I am Lazarus, come from the dead, 
Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all'"

This portion refers to the Biblical account of Lazarus' return from the dead, one of Christ's miracles.

"I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be" refers to Shakespeare's tragic hero, Hamlet, who dies due to his failure to act.  
"I grow old . . . I grow old . . . / I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled" talks about the passage of time, moving ever closer to death, especially "heard" in the repetition of "I grow old." 

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The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock

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