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by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

There is a haunting phantom called Regret,
        A shadowy creature robed somewhat like Woe,
        But fairer in the face, whom all men know
By her sad mien and eyes forever wet.
No heart would seek her; but once having met,
        All take her by the hand, and to and fro
        They wander through those paths of long ago—
Those hallowed ways 'twere wiser to forget.

One day she led me to that lost land's gate
        And bade me enter; but I answered "No!
I will pass on with my bold comrade, Fate;
        I have no tears to waste on thee—no time;
        My strength I hoard for heights I hope to climb:
No friend art thou for souls that would be great."

from Poems of Passion by Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1883)

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