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

9. Constance Hately

YOU praise my self-sacrifice, Spoon River,

In rearing Irene and Mary,

Orphans of my older sister!

And you censure Irene and Mary

For their contempt for me!

But praise not my self-sacrifice,

And censure not their contempt;

I reared them, I cared for them, true enough!—

But I poisoned my benefactions

With constant reminders of their dependence.