“The burnt out ends of smoky days” (T.S.Eliot’s Preludes)

The winter evening settles down
With smell of steaks in passageways.
Six o’clock.
The burnt-out ends of smoky days.
And now a gusty shower wraps
The grimy scraps
Of withered leaves about your feet
And newspapers from vacant lots;
The showers beat
On broken blinds and chimneypots,
And at the corner of the street
A lonely cab-horse steams and stamps.
And then the lighting of the lamps.

Apart from the “atmosphere” created here,what I have liked about this poem is the exquisite imagery used to create the atmosphere. especially ,the image of “the burnt out ends of smoky days” .The day is unending and one long uneventful dreary passage of smoke-filled time .There is nothing much to do all the time.Nothing really happens,nothing ever happens. The cigarette butts are slowly burning out leaving the ashes smoldering in the ash-tray .The day ,like the cigarette,burns out leaving only the smoky end. Another day,another empty passage of time-a prelude to nothing .

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