A Parallel Uni-Verse
Only until this cigarette is ended,
A little moment at the end of all,
While on the floor the quiet ashes fall,
And in the firelight to a lance extended,
Bizarrely with the jazzing music blended,
The broken shadow dances on the wall,
I will permit my memory to recall
The vision of you, by all my dreams attended.
And then adieu, -- farewell! -- the dream is done.
Yours is a face of which I can forget
The color and the features, every one,
The words not ever, and the smiles not yet;
But in your day this moment is the sun
Upon a hill, after the sun has set.


Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950) was one of America's most widely read poets in her lifetime. She grew up in Rockland and Camden, and won a Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 1923. This poem is one of 12 untitled sonnets in Second April published in 1921.
Sonnet IV from "Second April"
By Edna St. Vincent Millay
I shall forget you presently, my dear,
So make the most of this, your little day,
Your little month, your little half a year,
Ere I forget, or die, or move away,
And we are done forever; by and by
I shall forget you, as I said, but now,
If you entreat me with your loveliest lie
I will protest you with my favorite vow.
I would indeed that love were longer-lived,
And vows were not so brittle as they are,
But so it is, and nature has contrived
To struggle on without a break thus far,-
Whether or not we find what we are seeking
Is idle, biologically speaking.


This sonnet is from A Few Figs from Thistles, published in 1922.
My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night;
But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends --
It gives a lovely light!


This poem is from A Few Figs from Thistles, published in 1922.
First Fig
By Edna St. Vincent Millay
What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why,
I have forgotten, and what arms have lain
Under my head till morning; but the rain
Is full of ghosts tonight, that tap and sigh
Upon the glass and listen for reply,
And in my heart there stirs a quiet pain
For unremembered lads that not again
Will turn to me at midnight with a cry.
Thus in winter stands the lonely tree,
Nor knows what birds have vanished one by one,
Yet knows its boughs more silent than before:
I cannot say what loves have come and gone,
I only know that summer sang in me
A little while, that in me sings no more.

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Sonnet: What lips my lips have kissed
By Edna St. Vincent Millay
Half of my life is gone, and I have let
The years slip from me and have not fulfilled
The aspiration of my youth, to build
Some tower of song with lofty parapet.
Not indolence, nor pleasure, nor the fret
Of restless passions that would not be stilled,
But sorrow, and a care that almost killed,
Kept me from what I may accomplish yet;
Though, half-way up the hill, I see the Past
Lying beneath me with its sounds and sights,—
A city in the twilight dim and vast,
With smoking roofs, soft bells, and gleaming lights,—
And hear above me on the autumnal blast
The cataract of Death far thundering from the heights.


Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was born in Portland, Maine, in 1804, attended Bowdoin College and went on to become one of the three or four biggest-selling American poets ever, along with Edna St. Vincent Millay of Rockland, Maine, and Edwin Arlington Robinson of Gardiner, Maine.

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Mezzo Cammin
By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
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