Part of my work involves combing through hundred-year-old yearbooks, like this one. How lucky am I.
While perusing the 1917 Vassarion, I realized Edna St. Vincent Millay (who, at the time, went by Vincent) was at Vassar the same years that two of my research subjects were there. Vincent was, of course, a prolific sonnet writer. Here’s a seasonally appropriate one from her.
I know I am but summer to your heart,
And not the full four seasons of the year;
And you must welcome from another part
Such noble moods as are not mine, my dear.
No gracious weight of golden fruits to sell
Have I, nor any wise and wintry thing;
And I have loved you all too long and well
To carry still the high sweet breast of spring.
Wherefore I say: O love, as summer goes,
I must be gone, steal forth with silent drums,
That you may hail anew the bird and rose
When I come back to you, as summer comes.
Else will you seek, at some not distant time,
Even your summer in another clime.
And here’s a photo of Anne Longfellow Thorp (the tallest gal in the back row) — sporting a rare smile: