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Braggart

 The days will rally, wreathing
Their crazy tarantelle;
And you must go on breathing,
But I'll be safe in hell.
Like January weather, The years will bite and smart, And pull your bones together To wrap your chattering heart.
The pretty stuff you're made of Will crack and crease and dry.
The thing you are afraid of Will look from every eye.
You will go faltering after The bright, imperious line, And split your throat on laughter, And burn your eyes with brine.
You will be frail and musty With peering, furtive head, Whilst I am young and lusty Among the roaring dead.

by Dorothy Parker
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