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Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford

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The awful phantom of the hungry poor.
--
A Winter’s Night (sonnet).

 
Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford

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The more I thought about it, the better I liked the idea. The corps de ballet were already calling me "the Phantom of the Opera," an intriguing sobriquet which appealed to me very strongly, until I realized that it would mean signing my ransom notes P.T.O. One did not wish to descend to the ridiculous!
O.G. I became and O.G. I have remained.
But I still liked to think of myself as the Phantom.

 
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This poor world, the object of so much insane attachment, we are about to leave; it is but misery, vanity, and folly; a phantom, — the very fashion of which "passeth away."

 
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I have just this moment heard from the front — there is nothing yet of a movement, but each side is continually on the alert, expecting something to happen.
O Mother, to think that we are to have here soon what I have seen so many times, the awful loads and trains and boatloads of poor, bloody, and pale and wounded young men again — for that is what we certainly will, and before very long. I see all the little signs, getting ready in the hospitals, etc.; it is dreadful when one thinks about it. I sometimes think over the sights I have myself seen: the arrival of the wounded after a battle, and the scenes on the field, too, and I can hardly believe my own recollections. What an awful thing war is! Mother, it seems not men but a lot of devils and butchers butchering each other.

 
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Poor Nations are hungry, and rich Nations are proud, and Pride and Hunger will ever be at Variance.

 
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