The Penitent

Original Text: 
Edna St. Vincent Millay, A Few Figs from Thistles: Poems and Sonnets (New York and London: Harper, 1922): 17-18. PS 3525 I495F4 Robarts Library.
1I had a little Sorrow,
2    Born of a little Sin,
3I found a room all damp with gloom
4    And shut us all within;
5And, "Little Sorrow, weep," said I,
6"And, Little Sin, pray God to die,
7And I upon the floor will lie
8    And think how bad I've been!"
9Alas for pious planning --
10    It mattered not a whit!
11As far as gloom went in that room,
12    The lamp might have been lit!
13My Little Sorrow would not weep,
14My Little Sin would go to sleep --
15To save my soul I could not keep
16    My graceless mind on it!
17So up I got in anger,
18    And took a book I had,
19And put a ribbon on my hair
20    To please a passing lad.
21And, "One thing there's no getting by --
22I've been a wicked girl," said I;
23"But if I can't be sorry, why,
24    I might as well be glad!"
Publication Start Year: 
Publication Notes: 
Published in Poetry
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 1998.