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Now let no charitable hope

by
 Now let no charitable hope 
Confuse my mind with images 
Of eagle and of antelope: 
I am by nature none of these.
I was, being human, born alone; I am, being woman, hard beset; I live by squeezing from a stone What little nourishment I get.
In masks outrageous and austere The years go by in single file; But none has merited my fear, And none has quite escaped my smile.

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