18---> emily & eliot

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Name: Emily Ruck Keene
Hometown: Oxfordshire, England
Current City: Paris, France
Occupation: Editor and Co-Host of Paris Lit Up
Age: 28


What does poetry mean to you?


For me, poetry—writing and reading—is a unique personal experience, by which I mean that everyone can find something different in it. It might be writing a poem to express your political standpoint or reading a poem on loss that triggers a reaction in you. There is a silent dialogue between the words, the writer, and the reader that I find beautiful.


Favorite Poem:  “Portrait of a Lady” by T.S. Eliot


Why do you like this poem?


Eliot’s was a complicated personality, but his poetic genius can’t be denied. “Portrait of a Lady” is an excellent example of Eliot’s (in)famous reputation for having a ‘smug’ voice, his weaving of references like a tapestry, and the moments of fragility that catch the reader unawares:


“I feel like one who smiles, and turning shall remark
Suddenly, his expression in a glass.        
My self-possession gutters; we are really in the dark.”