Tuesday, December 13, 2011
(Edna St. Vincent Millay among the Magnolias,
1914, by Arnold Genthe, 1862-1942, American
Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950) is a prolific writer of novels, libretti, lyric poems, and some of America’s finest sonnets.
ON HEARING A SYMPHONY OF BEETHOVEN
Sweet sounds, oh, beautiful music, do not cease!
Reject me not into the world again.
With you alone is excellence and peace,
Mankind made plausible, his purpose plain.
Enchanted in your air benign and shrewd,
With limbs a-sprawl and empty faces pale,
The spiteful and the stingy and the rude
Sleep like the scullions in the fairy-tale.
This moment is the best the world can give:
The tranquil blossom on the tortured stem.
Reject me not, sweet sounds! oh, let me live,
Till Doom espy my towers and scatter them,
A city spell-bound under the aging sun.
Music my rampart, and my only one.