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Sonnet  "Lo, even as I passed"
Wallace Stevens (1879-1955)

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Wallace Stevens
1879-1955


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NOTES:

Wallace Stevens is one of the major poets of the 20th  Century. Besides devoting his life to writing and as a patron of the arts, Stevens led a successful business career beginning as an attorney in private practice and culminating as a vice-president of Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company.  He received the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1955, shortly before his death.

For details about this poet's life and work, I recommend a visit to the Poetry Foundation.

- S. H. Bass


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Sonnet                                                              
"Lo, even as I passed"

Wallace Stevens (1879-1955), American poet

Lo, even as I passed beside the booth
Of roses, and beheld them brightly twine
To damask heights, taking them as a sign
Of my own self still unconcerned with truth;
Even as I held up in hands uncouth
And drained with joy the golden-bodied wine,
Deeming it half-unworthy, half divine,
From out the sweet-rimmed goblet of my youth.
Even in that pure hour I heard the tone
Of grievous music stir in memory,
Telling me of the time already flown
From my first youth. It sounded like the rise
Of distant echo from dead melody,
Soft as a song heard far in Paradise.

from The Public Domain Poems & Prose of Wallace Stevens (Internet Archive). Originally published in The Harvard Advocate, Vol. LXIX, No. 5 (May 10, 1900) under the pseudonym “R. Jerries”.




The Public Domain Works of Wallace Stevens

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  Wallace Stevens:  The Collected Poems (1990)












   

      

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