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About this Poem 

“The Shroud” was published in The New Poetry: An Anthology (Macmillan, 1917).

The Shroud

Death, I say, my heart is bowed
   Unto thine, O mother!
This red gown will make a shroud
   Good as any other.

(I, that would not wait to wear
   My own bridal things,
In a dress dark as my hair
   Made my answerings.

I, to-night, that till he came
   Could not, could not wait,
In a gown as bright as flame
   Held for them the gate.)

Death, I say, my heart is bowed
   Unto thine, O mother!
This red gown will make a shroud
   Good as any other.

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on September 15, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on September 15, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

Edna St. Vincent Millay

Edna St. Vincent Millay

Poet and playwright Edna St. Vincent Millay was born in Rockland, Maine.

by this poet

poem
Strong sun, that bleach
The curtains of my room, can you not render
Colourless this dress I wear?—
This violent plaid
Of purple angers and red shames; the yellow stripe
Of thin but valid treacheries; the flashy green of kind deeds done
Through indolence high judgments given here in haste; 
The recurring checker
poem
Listen, children:
Your father is dead.
From his old coats
I'll make you little jackets;
I'll make you little trousers
From his old pants.
There'll be in his pockets
Things he used to put there,
Keys and pennies
Covered with tobacco;
Dan shall have the pennies
To save in his bank;
Anne shall have the keys
To make
poem
Childhood is not from birth to a certain age and at a certain age
The child is grown, and puts away childish things.
Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies.

Nobody that matters, that is. Distant relatives of course
Die, whom one never has seen or has seen for an hour,
And they gave one candy in a pink-and-