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Oscar Wilde: Helas

Helas

To drift with every passion till my soul
Is a stringed lute on which all winds can play,
Is it for this that I have given away
Mine ancient wisdom, and austere control?
Methinks my life is a twice-written scroll
Scrawled over on some boyish holiday
With idle songs for pipe and virelay,
Which do but mar the secret of the whole.
Surely there was a time I might have trod
The sunlit heights, and from life’s dissonance
Struck one clear chord to reach the ears of God.
Is that time dead? lo!  with a little rod
I did but touch the honey of romance
And must I lose a soul’s inheritance?

Oscar Wilde
(1854 – 1900)
Helas

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