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One interpretation of this deceptively simple poem is that the narrator of "Dover Beach" has lost his faith in humanity. He sees the ocean as symbolic of ebb and flow of human events, influenced by forces beyond human control, as the sea is moved by the pull of the moon. He says that:
The Sea of FaithWas once, too, at the full, and round earth’s shoreLay like the folds of a bright girdle furled.But now I only hearIts melancholy, long, withdrawing roar....
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