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Edwin Arlington Robinson - Bewick Finzer

Time was when his half million drew 
The breath of six per cent; 
But soon the worm of what-was-not 
Fed hard on his content; 
And something crumbled in his brain 
When his half million went. 

Time passed, and filled along with his 
The place of many more; 
Time came, and hardly one of us 
Had credence to restore, 
From what appeared one day, the man 
Whom we had known before. 

The broken voice, the withered neck, 
The coat worn out with care, 
The cleanliness of indigence, 
The brilliance of despair, 
The fond imponderable dreams 
Of affluence,--all were there. 

Poor Finzer, with his dreams and schemes, 
Fares hard now in the race, 
With heart and eye that have a task 
When he looks in the eye 
Of one who might so easily 
Have been in Finzer's place. 

He comes unfailing for the loan 
We give and then forget; 
He comes, and probably for years 
Will he be coming yet,-- 
Familiar as an old mistake, 
And futile as regret. 

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Poet: Edwin Arlington Robinson
Poem: Bewick Finzer
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