The Hollow Men



We are the hollow men

We are the stuffed men

Leaning together

Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!

Our dried voices, when

We whisper together

Are quiet and meaningless

As wind in dry grass

Or rats' feet over broken glass

In our dry cellar


Shape without form, shade without colour,

Paralysed force gesture without motion;


Those who have crossed

With direct eyes, to death's other Kingdom

Remember us - if at all- not lost

Violent souls, but only

As the hollow men

The stuffed men.




Eyes, I dare not meet in dreams

In death's dream kingdom

These do not appear:

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.


Let me be no nearer

In death's dream kingdom

Let me also waer

Such deliberate disguises

Rat's coat, crowskin, rossed staves

In a field

Behaving as the wind behaves

No nearer


Not that final meeting

In twilight kingdom 





This is the dead land

This is cactus land

Here the stone images

Are raised, here they receive

The supplication of dead man's hand

Under the twinkle of fading star.


Is it like this

In death's other kingdom

Walking alone

At the hour when we are

Trembling with tenderness

Lips that would kiss

Form prayers to broken stone





The eyes are not here

There are no eyes here

In this valley of dying stars

In this hollow valley

This broken jaw of our lost kingdoms


In this last of meeting places

We group together

And avoid speech

Gathered on this beach of tumid river


Sightless, unless

The eyes reappear

As the perpetual star

Multifoliate rose

Of death's twilight kingdom

The hope only

Of empty men





Here we go round the prickly pear

Prickly pear prickly pear

Here we go round the prickly pear

At five o'clock in the morning


Between the idea

 And the reality

Between the motion

And the act

Falls the shadow

For Thine is the Kingdom


Between the conception

And creation

Between the emotion

And the respond

Falls the shadow

Life is very long


Between the desire

And the spasm

Between the potency

And the existence

Between the essence

And the descent

Falls the shadow

For Thine is the Kingdom


For Thine is

Life is

For Thine is the


This is the way the world ends

This is the way the world ends

This is the way the world ends

Not with a bang but with a whimper