The Wisdom of Prufrock

There will be time, there will be time / To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;

Do I dare disturb the universe?

In a minute there is time / For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.

I have measured out my life with coffee spoons

I should have been a pair of ragged claws / Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.

I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker

Would it have been worth while, / To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball / To roll it toward some overwhelming question

We have lingered in the chambers of the sea / By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown /
Till human voices wake us, and we drown.

Thomas Stearns Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, first published in Poetry: A Magazine of Verse (June 1915)