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Poem in octosyllabic couplets by Edna St. Vincent Millay, published in 1912 and collected in Renascence and Other Poems (1917).

With an air of casual simplicity, the poet tells how “Infinity came down and settled over me … I saw and heard, and knew at last the How and Why of all things.…” For this omniscience she pays in “infinite remorse,” feeling as her own all the sin, regret, and agony of mankind. “Close-sepulchred” thus, she cries to God for new birth, and, upon casting off her self-centered belief and discovering again “Thy radiant identity,” is granted the return of her own life to enjoy the freshness and beauty of the world.

Subjects: Literature.

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