Today feels different. Today feels lush with potential. Today feels like a hinge moment in our nation's history.
"I dwell in Possibility -" writes the poet Emily Dickinson. Possibility is an optimistic, transformative space. Going to the polls today, we do so on the cusp of historic change.
As a people, we are voting on Ireland's future direction. Nothing less is at stake. We aren't deciding on the nuts and bolts of policies - manifesto promises are meaningless and compromise is inevitable once government formation horse-trading begins. This is about which path we choose to take as a nation.
It's unusual to feel that change is a genuine prospect, even on General Election day. Incoming governments tend to mean a personnel reshuffle rather than a new direction. But something seismic appears possible today.
Come what may, the Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil duopoly is being overturned. From a two-party State, we have become a three-party State - and the third bloc is part of the Stormont government, lending an all-island significance as never before in modern politics.
There is a real sense Sinn Féin is en route to government formation in Dáil Éireann for the first time since 1922, when its members sat in the Second Dáil.
And in topping recent opinion polls, there has been more than an echo of that first election fought by the party - the landslide 1918 ballot which led to the inaugural Dáil Éireann's foundation.
Those opinion polls show the party has broken with the past in a proportion of voters' minds. Furthermore, they reflect Sinn Féin's support among a young demographic for whom the Troubles are as remote as the trenches of WWI.
Yes, something momentous may be in the frame here. "All changed, changed utterly," as Yeats has it. If the party enters into government it will be on the basis of advancing reunification, as the electorate is well aware.
Both Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael insist they won't strike a deal with Sinn Féin. There is irony implicit in this stance. No opportunity is missed for scolding the party over seats left unoccupied in Westminster - and in almost the same breath saying its members can't hope to enter government in Dáil Éireann. So far and no further is the message. We are the gatekeepers and beyond here you cannot pass. But it is the people's vote which ought to decide such matters, not the presumption of party leaders.
Who believes Leo Varadkar and Micheál Martin when they say they won't cosy up to Sinn Féin? Not me.
Everything we need to know about power can be expressed in one word. Addictive.
Today, Mr Varadkar is fighting for his political life. Mary Lou McDonald is fighting for her party. And Mr Martin is fighting both for his political survival and his party - for its rehabilitation.
Mr Varadkar needs Sinn Féin to do well because that is likeliest to reduce the Fianna Fáil vote. It allows him to tell his party that the electorate wants him to agree a coalition with Sinn Féin.
Otherwise, his future as Fine Gael leader is in jeopardy. Already, discussion about a successor has surfaced with Simon Coveney and Paschal Donohoe's names cited.
Mr Martin needs Sinn Féin to perform badly because he is more resistant to going into government with Sinn Féin than Mr Varadkar.
Palpable antipathy is evident to an extraordinary degree for a Fianna Fáil leader, when he mentions Sinn Féin. He'd prefer to cobble together a rainbow alternative, however bockety.
As for Ms McDonald, overall she has had a very good campaign, despite lingering questions about Paul Quinn's horrific murder by the IRA in 2007. This will give some people pause for thought at the polling stations. But by and large she has helped her party to win broader support - Sinn Féin has gone mainstream in the Republic.
It will get out its core vote and mop up support from elsewhere, particularly young people, but cannot end up as the largest party because it's not running enough candidates.
Both Mr Varadkar and Mr Martin may end up a-courting Ms McDonald. The matchmaking price will not be an imminent Border poll, but government resources and emphasis given to charting a pathway towards reunification.
If Fianna Fáil can form part of the next Dáil, then the party is back - it has put the financial collapse behind it. But here's a question for voters: Did Fianna Fáil support Fine Gael in a confidence-and-supply arrangement solely for the State's welfare because of Brexit? Or did Mr Martin know he had to restore people's trust in his party?
Arguably, it was not a disinterested stance. Fianna Fáil benefited when the party showed it could behave responsibly.
So, a lot to bear in mind as we enter polling stations today.
If we walk in feeling change is impossible and nothing we do is capable of delivering it, then that's what will happen. But if we arrive convinced our votes can effect change, then it will take place.
What's driving this desire for change remarked on throughout the campaign? I believe it's a conviction the Irish can become a better version of ourselves. As a people, we reject the idea that those who struggle ought to be left alone to sink or swim as chance decrees. We want others housed with decency, not left to sleep rough or raise families in emergency accommodation. We want citizens to aspire to home ownership if they choose - not for it to be an impossible dream. We want a decent healthcare system. We want fairness and equality.
Personally, too, I want an end to the inhumane direct provision system, which warehouses people, dehumanises them and denies their intrinsic worth. Those are the matters I'm turning over today as I head for the polling booth.
Some people may feel they need to vote tactically, not for the party they'd like to have in government but to keep out another party. Others may take a chance on a party they have never voted for before.
We can learn from the openness of young people voting for the first time today - they haven't lost their sense that change is possible. As though it was yesterday, I remember my first time to vote: the sense of agency and investment in the community it gave me. May it be like that for today's début voters.
"You do not need to know precisely what is happening, or exactly where it is all going. What you need is to recognise the possibilities and challenges offered by the present moment, and to embrace them with courage, faith and hope." So said the American Trappist monk, theologian and writer Thomas Merton.
Courage, faith and hope: a compelling combination to pocket along with your polling card.