Posted by: Tom Triumph | July 28, 2009

46. In a Station of The Metro: Ezra Pound

I am in Paris at the moment, and have spent hours a day on the Metro getting from my hotel to the center of the city. With two young children, they are slow on the stairs, count the stops every stop, and fight over who gets to push the button that opens the door. So, I am partial to this poem as the Metro is a major part of our day.

For your students, know that this is the work of an Imagist. It is what it is. Can your students picture the scene? Do they know what a subway is? The Metro? Are the familiar with Paris in the 1920s? Who is Ezra Pound, and what is the Modernist movement (before he became a fascist)? There is a lot of critical and historical criticism to mine here, but the best way to teach it is to see this as a photograph. What does it look like? Have your students draw a picture, share, and then discuss.

In a Station of The Metro
Ezra Pound

The apparition of these faces in the crowd;
Petals on a wet, black bough.

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