From Martin, whose email is still giving him problems:
(Poem #1064) Travel
The railroad track is miles away, And the day is loud with voices speaking, Yet there isn't a train goes by all day But I hear its whistle shrieking. All night there isn't a train goes by, Though the night is still for sleep and dreaming, But I see its cinders red on the sky, And hear its engine steaming. My heart is warm with friends I make, And better friends I'll not be knowing; Yet there isn't a train I'd rather take, No matter where it's going.
Another poem that really speaks to me (indeed, I believe that it is this quality of speaking to, and often for, me that Millay possesses in greater measure than any other poet with whom I am familiar). I am faintly reminded of the old saying "It is better to travel hopefully than to arrive", but even that misses the point - the word 'hopefully' implies that travelling is a means towards an end. Millay celebrates, instead, the pure act of travel, and the powerful attraction it can possess. Of course, there is also a strong escapist subtext running through the poem, the implication that, while the narrator might not care where she is travelling *to*, she is certainly travelling *from* 'here'. However, I believe, or perhaps prefer to believe, that that is not the poem's main thrust - that, instead, the lure of the train is purely positive, a desire to travel rather than to escape. I've run a number of Millay's poems in the past, and attempted to analyse their appeal; this one I'm running for the sheer visceral reaction it provoked, and for the way it resonated with my own feelings on the matter. Any further analysis would be superfluous. -martin. [Minstrels Links] Edna St. Vincent Millay: Poem #34, First Fig Poem #49, The Unexplorer Poem #108, The Penitent Poem #317, Inland Poem #590, Sonnet XLIII Poem #604, Euclid Alone Has Looked On Beauty Bare Poem #817, Grown-up Poem #860, Sonnet: Love Is Not All Poem #905, I will put Chaos into fourteen lines Poem #926, Dirge Without Music Poem #956, Ashes of Life all of which can be found at [broken link] http://www.cs.rice.edu/~ssiyer/minstrels/index_poet_M.html#Millay