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Edgar Lee Masters (1868–1950). Spoon River Anthology. 1916.

119. Anthony Findlay

BOTH for the country and for the man,

And for a country as well as a man,

’Tis better to be feared than loved.

And if this country would rather part

With the friendship of every nation

Than surrender its wealth,

I say of a man ’tis worse to lose

Money than friends.

And I rend the curtain that hides the soul

Of an ancient aspiration:

When the people clamor for freedom

They really seek for power o’er the strong.

I, Anthony Findlay, rising to greatness

From a humble water carrier,

Until I could say to thousands “Come,”

And say to thousands “Go,”

Affirm that a nation can never be good,

Or achieve the good,

Where the strong and the wise have not the rod

To use on the dull and weak.