The Dragon-Fly

I wound myself in a white cocoon of singing,
All day long in the brook’s uneven bed,
Measuring out my soul in a mucous thread;
Dimly now to the brook’s green bottom clinging,
Men behold me, a worm spun-out and dead,
Walled in an iron house of silky singing.

Nevertheless at length, O reedy shallows,
Not as a plodding nose to the slimy stem,
But as a brazen wing with a spangled hem,
Over the jewel-weed and the pink marsh-mallows,
Free of these and making a song of them,
I shall arise, and a song of the reedy shallows!


by Edna St. Vincent Millay

An American poet and playwright, Edna St. Vincent Millay was born in Rockland, Maine, on February 22, 1892. In 1923, she received the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, and was the third woman to win this award for poetry. Millay died in 1950, in her home, of a heart attack. She was 58 years old.