The Hollow Men
How we cite our quotes:
Those who have crossed
With direct eyes, to death's other Kingdom
Remember us—if at all—not as lost (lines 13-15)
This is a strange poem to be dealing with exile, a concept that is usually political and not spiritual in nature. But the Hollow Men are exiled from "death's other Kingdom."
There, the eyes are
Sunlight on a broken column
There, is a tree swinging
And voices are
In the wind's singing
More distant and more solemn
Than a fading star. (lines 22-28)
Where is "there"? Our guess would be Heaven or "death's other Kingdom," but the image of a "broken column" is not a happy one. At any rate, the Hollow Men do not have a good idea of what Heaven is like because they are so far away from it.
Is it like this
In death's other kingdom
At the hour when we are
Trembling with tenderness
Lips that would kiss
Form prayers to broken stone. (lines 45-51)
Though they are deathly afraid (pun!) of Heaven and those eyes in particular, they also have a naïve curiosity about "what's it like there?" Once again, they have no idea how to imagine this other kingdom, except through reference to their own sad existence.