Legend

By Hart Crane 1899–1932 Hart Crane
As silent as a mirror is believed
Realities plunge in silence by ...

I am not ready for repentance;
Nor to match regrets. For the moth
Bends no more than the still
Imploring flame. And tremorous
In the white falling flakes
Kisses are,—
The only worth all granting.

It is to be learned—
This cleaving and this burning,
But only by the one who
Spends out himself again.

Twice and twice
(Again the smoking souvenir,
Bleeding eidolon!) and yet again.
Until the bright logic is won
Unwhispering as a mirror
Is believed.

Then, drop by caustic drop, a perfect cry
Shall string some constant harmony,—
Relentless caper for all those who step
The legend of their youth into the noon.

Source: The Complete Poems of Hart Crane (2001)

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Poet Hart Crane 1899–1932

SCHOOL / PERIOD Modern

 Hart  Crane

Biography

Hart Crane is a legendary figure among American poets. In his personal life he showed little self-esteem, indulging in great and frequent bouts of alcohol abuse. In his art, however, he showed surprising optimism. Critics have contended that for Crane, misery and despair were redeemed through the apprehension of beauty, and in some of his greatest verses he articulated his own quest for redemption. He also believed strongly in . . .

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SCHOOL / PERIOD Modern

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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