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Epitaph for an Old Woman

Epitaph for an Old Woman

by Octavio Paz

Sadness Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #4

joy for the living
                      is sorrow for the dead (5-6)

Now, we get down to the nitty gritty of sorrow in the poem. There are a couple ways to interpret these lines. One is that sorrow only happens because we experience joy. The other is that all joy ends in sorrow. These are the two interpretations we've been talking about, but please don't let us confine you. Run wild with the lines, and read them how you want! For the purpose of thinking about this quote, though, it's important to notice that "sorrow for the dead" ends the poem. That's a pretty dark and hefty way to end a tiny little poem like this.

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