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

39. Zenas Witt


I WAS sixteen, and I had the most terrible dreams, 
And specks before my eyes, and nervous weakness. 
And I couldn’t remember the books I read, 
Like Frank Drummer who memorized page after page. 
And my back was weak, and I worried and worried,         5
And I was embarrassed and stammered my lessons, 
And when I stood up to recite I’d forget 
Everything that I had studied. 
Well, I saw Dr. Weese’s advertisement, 
And there I read everything in print,  10
Just as if he had known me; 
And about the dreams which I couldn’t help. 
So I knew I was marked for an early grave. 
And I worried until I had a cough, 
And then the dreams stopped.  15
And then I slept the sleep without dreams 
Here on the hill by the river. 


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