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September 1, 1939

W.H. Auden

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September 1, 1939 by W.H. Auden
Added by: Diana Lowry
I was reading this poem yesterday for graduate school and studying some of it's structure, and I realized that it had NINE stanzas of ELEVEN lines each--considering that other people have said this is a "prophetic" poem about "wars", it immediately made me think of 9/11. THEN, (and I am NOT a numerologist and am NOT superstitious) I looked at the title : September 1, 1939, and written out in numbers, this reads as 911939, i.e. 9/11 939, which leaves 939, also 9 stanzas x 11 lines = 99, ergo the other two nines, which leaves the 3 (perhaps WWIII?...Ihope not, but coonsidering the current war atmosphere with all of the problems in the Middle East,, you never know...) Of course, all of this is mere coincidence and somewhat foolish, but if you READ the poem carefully and the parts about the skycrapers (2) and the "air" above them and the skycrapers "groping" ("humanizing" them) it does give one an impression of some kind of "prophesy" even thought I don't believe in THAT either...and the terrible "odor" of the September air (and the poem was written by this English poet/subject in NYC, the location of the attack on the 2 towers, but written 9/1/1939, during the eve of the German invasion of Poland, WWII, when the author was sitting in a bar on 52nd Street (the year of my birth...) and no possible odor could be coming from Poland, but it WOULD be coming from NYC in September 2001, three (3!) years ago, all in all, it made for a wieeeerd happenchance. I told my professor today and told him I thought probably a lot of people had come up with these wierd coincidences in numbers and he said he didn't think so. Anyway, I thought I'd just post this for general interest of your readers...Diana Lowry
Added by: Steven
I think that this is an intensely engagaging poem that has the power to speak on the vast array of human collective experience. mmm, good poetry.

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