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Friday, July 28, 2006

Part Four: Time and Eternity


I READ my sentence steadily,
Reviewed it with my eyes,
To see that I made no mistake
In its extremest clause,—


The date, and manner of the shame;
And then the pious form
That “God have mercy” on the soul
The jury voted him.


I made my soul familiar
With her extremity,
That at the last it should not be
A novel agony,


But she and Death, acquainted,
Meet tranquilly as friends,
Salute and pass without a hint—
And there the matter ends.
Emily Dickinson (1830–86). Complete Poems. 1924.

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