Like Pound, Eliot is one of my grandfather’s favorites. As if my anti-fundamentalist, anti-sectarian, atheist grandfather never read the openly anti-Semitic line, “The rats are underneath the piles. / The jew is underneath the lot. / Money in furs,” a line that makes me later, at twenty-two when I discover it, try and retract my admiration for “Morning at the Window” and “Prufrock” without quite succeeding.
There may be scientific data to back up Porter’s assertion, however I cannot find it. Searching through the literature, both medical and musical, does show a lot of scholarly articles dealing with lip damage, but to my knowledge there are none that show the vermilion is more sensitive to pressure and prone to damage from normal brass playing. Just because I can’t find any doesn’t mean it isn’t there, but such a confident statement as Porter’s doesn’t appear to be backed up.
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