Dirge Without Music

“I am not resigned to the shutting away of loving hearts in the hard ground.
So it is, and so it will be, for so it has been, time out of mind:
Into the darkness they go, the wise and the lovely. Crowned
With lilies and with laurel they go; but I am not resigned.

Lovers and thinkers, into the earth with you.
Be one with the dull, the indiscriminate dust.
A fragment of what you felt, of what you knew,
A formula, a phrase remains,—but the best is lost.

The answers quick and keen, the honest look, the laughter, the love,—
They are gone. They are gone to feed the roses. Elegant and curled
Is the blossom. Fragrant is the blossom. I know. But I do not approve.
More precious was the light in your eyes than all the roses in the world.

Down, down, down into the darkness of the grave
Gently they go, the beautiful, the tender, the kind;
Quietly they go, the intelligent, the witty, the brave.
I know. But I do not approve. And I am not resigned.”
―Edna St. Vincent Millay

City in the Sea

Lo! Death has reared himself a throne
In a strange city lying alone
Far down within the dim West,
Wherethe good and the bad and the worst and the best
Have gone to their eternal rest.
There shrines and palaces and towers
(Time-eaten towers that tremble not!)
Resemble nothing that is ours.
Around, by lifting winds forgot,
Resignedly beneath the sky
The melancholy waters lie.

No rays from the holy heaven come down
On the long night-time of that town;
But light from out the lurid sea
Streams up the turrets silently—
Gleams up the pinnacles far and free—
Up domes—up spires—up kingly halls—
Up fanes—up Babylon-like walls—
Up shadowy long-forgotten bowers
Of scultured ivy and stone flowers—
Up many and many a marvellous shrine
Whose wreathed friezes intertwine
The viol, the violet, and the vine.

Resignedly beneath the sky
The melancholy waters lie.
So blend the turrets and shadows there
That all seem pendulous in air,
While from a proud tower in the town
Death looks gigantically down.

There open fanes and gaping graves
Yawn level with the luminous waves;
But not the riches there that lie
In each idol’s diamond eye—
Not the gaily-jewelled dead
Tempt the waters from their bed;
For no ripples curl, alas!
Along that wilderness of glass—
No swellings tell that winds may be
Upon some far-off happier sea—
No heavings hint that winds have been
On seas less hideously serene.

But lo, a stir is in the air!
The wave—there is a movement there!
As if the towers had thrown aside,
In slightly sinking, the dull tide—
As if their tops had feebly given
A void within the filmy Heaven.
The waves have now a redder glow—
The hours are breathing faint and low—
And when, amid no earthly moans,
Down, down that town shall settle hence,
Hell, rising from a thousand thrones,
Shall do it reverence.

-Edgar Allan Poe

Sunset and Evening Star

“Sunset and evening star,
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea,
But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
Turns again home.
Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
When I embark;
For tho’ from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crost the bar.”
-“Crossing the Bar,” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-1892)

I Am Like Her

“I am like her. The one you left for me.

And I hope you know I knew you would leave me, as you did her.

But I didn’t much care, because I wear rejection like other women
wear diamonds; covered in the memories of those lost.

And I know you. You thought I would never do better than you, so my days would be spent pining and rewinding.

But you never knew me. I breathed love through all the tears because nothing is better than being with someone who chooses me, and you were never going to choose

Because I know you. Options are your fuel, and you run on women’s hearts like big trucks run on diesel fuel. Always taking a little more than you need. Always costing
more than you should.

You must think I am drunk still. But I got sober when you left me.

So sure, come again please. I would like to have the opportunity to face you. For girls like me become women who don’t sell their truths for late night dinners garnished with pleasantries and stories devoid of truth designed to make me want you.

I don’t live for your compliments anymore. And I don’t need your approval. I took all that wanting and needing and turned it in on me.

I poured all that yearning for something more into me and filled my belly till I was so full, I didn’t even feel lonely anymore.

And slowly, the missing seeped out of me, and slowly, the hurt turned to tender memories that hit me swiftly and moved on easily.

I hope you find her; the one you don’t want to leave for someone newer and shinier.

I hope you learn to see how your obsession with “could be better”, “must keep my options open always”, is torturing mostly you.

Because we move on. And you’re cycling back through now, calling ones from before,
And I am flattered, I am. I even notice the love I have in me for you.

But I know you. You will never be satisfied. Not with me, not with anybody till you start
adoring you, till you stop chasing pretty so that empty feels filled and not just momentarily.

I admit I wanted to be that girl for you. I wanted to be the one you stopped on, I thought I would be different. If I just poured enough of me into you. If I gave you space, but let you know I was always here. If I never got angry and always did things perfectly and so sweetly.

But it blew up, didn’t it? It didn’t work, not really. And I got clear.

I am just not the girl to teach you how to adore. I am just not your girl
anymore.” –Emily Rosen 

❤️ Emily Joy Rosen


By a route obscure and lonely,
Haunted by ill angels only,
Where an Eidolon, named NIGHT,
On a black throne reigns upright,
I have reached these lands but newly
“From an ultimate dim Thule-
From a wild clime that lieth, sublime,
Out of SPACE- out of TIME.

Bottomless vales and boundless floods,
And chasms, and caves, and Titan woods,
With forms that no man can discover
For the tears that drip all over;
Mountains toppling evermore
Into seas without a shore;
Seas that restlessly aspire,
Surging, unto skies of fire;
Lakes that endlessly outspread
Their lone waters- lone and dead,-
Their still waters- still and chilly
With the snows of the lolling lily.

By the lakes that thus outspread
Their lone waters, lone and dead,-
Their sad waters, sad and chilly
With the snows of the lolling lily,-
By the mountains- near the river
Murmuring lowly, murmuring ever,-
By the grey woods,- by the swamp
Where the toad and the newt encamp-
By the dismal tarns and pools
Where dwell the Ghouls,-
By each spot the most unholy-
In each nook most melancholy-
There the traveller meets aghast
Sheeted Memories of the Past-
Shrouded forms that start and sigh
As they pass the wanderer by-
White-robed forms of friends long given,
In agony, to the Earth- and Heaven.

For the heart whose woes are legion
‘Tis a peaceful, soothing region-
For the spirit that walks in shadow
‘Tis- oh, ’tis an Eldorado!
But the traveller, travelling through it,
May not- dare not openly view it!
Never its mysteries are exposed
To the weak human eye unclosed;
So wills its King, who hath forbid
The uplifting of the fringed lid;
And thus the sad Soul that here passes
Beholds it but through darkened glasses.

By a route obscure and lonely,
Haunted by ill angels only,
Where an Eidolon, named NIGHT,
On a black throne reigns upright,
I have wandered home but newly
From this ultimate dim Thule.

Edgar Allan Poe