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The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls Summary & Analysis
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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"The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls" is a poem from Ultima Thule (1880), one of the last collections published by American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882). The poem tells the story of a mysterious "traveller" who rushes along a shore as the sun sets. Night falls, the rising tide washes the traveller's footprints from the sand, and the next morning the world goes on as usual—but the traveller never reappears. The poem's brief, eerie tale symbolizes the journey from life to death, perhaps indirectly reflecting on Longfellow's own impending mortality.

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