Edna St. Vincent Millay

(22 February 1892 – 19 October 1950 / Rockland / Maine / United States)

Justice Denied In Massachusetts


Let us abandon then our gardens and go home
And sit in the sitting-room
Shall the larkspur blossom or the corn grow under this cloud?
Sour to the fruitful seed
Is the cold earth under this cloud,
Fostering quack and weed, we have marched upon but cannot
conquer;
We have bent the blades of our hoes against the stalks of them.

Let us go home, and sit in the sitting room.
Not in our day
Shall the cloud go over and the sun rise as before,
Beneficent upon us
Out of the glittering bay,
And the warm winds be blown inward from the sea
Moving the blades of corn
With a peaceful sound.

Forlorn, forlorn,
Stands the blue hay-rack by the empty mow.
And the petals drop to the ground,
Leaving the tree unfruited.
The sun that warmed our stooping backs and withered the weed
uprooted—
We shall not feel it again.
We shall die in darkness, and be buried in the rain.

What from the splendid dead
We have inherited —
Furrows sweet to the grain, and the weed subdued —
See now the slug and the mildew plunder.
Evil does overwhelm
The larkspur and the corn;
We have seen them go under.

Let us sit here, sit still,
Here in the sitting-room until we die;
At the step of Death on the walk, rise and go;
Leaving to our children's children the beautiful doorway,
And this elm,
And a blighted earth to till
With a broken hoe.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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  • James Fairway (1/30/2012 5:22:00 PM)

    If anyone doesn't like this poem it is because they don't understand the meaning. Do some research before you judge a poem, not all poems are black and white and some have deeper meaning into this world that we live in. No poem should be disliked because of people not digging into it. This poem digs into deep political problems that were very prevalent at the time. (Report) Reply

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