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THE HOUSE OF LIFE: THE SONNET (INTRODUCTION), by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: A sonnet is a moment's monument
Last Line: In charon's palm it pay the toll to death.
Alternate Author Name(s): Rossetti, Gabriel Charles Dante
Subject(s): Sonnet (as Literary Form)

A sonnet is a moment's monument,--
Memorial from the Soul's eternity
To one dead deathless hour. Look that it be,
Whether for lustral rite or dire portent,
Of its own arduous fulness reverent:
Carve it in ivory or in ebony,
As Day or Night may rule; and let Time see
Its flowering crest impearled and orient.

A Sonnet is a coin: its face reveals
The soul,--its converse, to what Power 'tis due:--
Whether for tribute to the august appeals
Of Life, or dower in Love's high retinue,
It serve: or, 'mid the dark wharf's cavernous breath,
In Charon's palm it pay the toll to Death.

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