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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889

After Wings

By Sarah Morgan Bryan Piatt (1836–1919)

THIS was your butterfly, you see.

His fine wings made him vain?—

The caterpillars crawl, but he

Passed them in rich disdain?—

My pretty boy says: “Let him be

Only a worm again?”

Oh, child, when things have learned to wear

Wings once, they must be fain

To keep them always high and fair.

Think of the creeping pain

Which even a butterfly must bear

To be a worm again!