The Life of T.S. Eliot

Thomas Stearns Eliot was born on September 26, 1888. He attended Harvard University. Eliot earned both undergraduate and masters degrees and did several poems to the Harvard Advocate.   The following year, he married Vivienne Haigh-Wood and began working in London, first as a teacher, and later for Lloyd's Bank.   He wrote "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" in 1915.   Eliot was now considered by many to be the most influential poet of the twentieth century.   By 1930, and for the next thirty years, he was the most dominant figure in poetry in the English-speaking world.   .   Long associated with the publishing house of Faber & Faber, he published many other poets, and eventually became director of the firm. After an unhappy first marriage, Eliot separated from his first wife in 1933. He was remarried to Valerie Fletcher in 1956. T. S. Eliot received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1948, and died in London in 1965.

During the first eighteen years of his life T.S. Eliot lived in St. Louis, Missouri. In 1910, he left the United States for the Sorbonne. After a year in Paris, he returned to Harvard to pursue a doctorate in philosophy, but returned to Europe and settled in England in 1914. He became a British citizen in 1927.

“Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?                               I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.                 I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.
I do not think that they will sing to me.
I have seen them riding seaward on the waves                             Combing the white hair of the waves blown back                                                 When the wind blows the water white and black.
We have lingered in the chambers of the sea                                           By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown                               Till human voices wake us, and we drown.”