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"Anyone Lived in a Pretty How Town" moves by the alternation of negation of life with joy in life, the someones set against anyone and noone. These contrasts involve youth and age, innocence and experience, feeling and not feeling; but the overall contrast is between harmony

and disharmony. It is possible to read each stanza as primarily positive or negative in tone and feeling as Cummings moves from the sympathetic lovers to the antagonistic and imperceptive commonality who oppose the lovers' childlike simplicity. Stanza 1, of course, positive; stanza 2, introducing the "Women and men ... [who] ... sowed their isn't" is negative; stanza 3 recounts noone's love for anyone and is positive. Once such a description is made, we quickly see that the sound of the bells changes with the positive or negative tone of the stanza. In the positive stanzas the bells ring the seasons: "spring summer autumn winter." The statement is natural, logical, harmonious. But in the negative stanzas the bells ring an impossible mixture of "sun moon stars rain." Unity is violated, logic falls away, and harmony is cracked.

The harmony that Cummings seeks and celebrates in the poem is that of the full accomplished love of anyone and noone, the harmony of "anyone's any was all to her" and the final sustaining and triumphant harmony of: "noone and anyone earth by april / wish by spirit and if by yes." This harmony is sounded by the bells, and it is symbolized by the bells. The harmony which Cummings sees in anyone and noone is the essential, inevitable, and absolutely necessary harmony of bell and clapper. The bell has a symbolic force equivalent to the Chinese yang and yin. That anyone and noone achieve just this harmony of masculine and feminine, active and passive, and, indeed, flesh and spirit, is clear in the image of stanza 4, "bird by snow and stir by still."