LONG since I taught my spirit to obey
The Sage's great commandment - to forget ­
And so to lose life's bitterness and fret
And taste its sweetness; and I went my way
Eluding joy and sorrow, grave and gay,
And lived exempt, my being always set
Upon the striking hour, without regret,
Secure, refreshed, remote from yesterday.
But oh my friend, my love, my very dear,
My practised wisdom is a curse to me;
I do forget, and when you are not near
It is, by Heaven, as if you ceased to be;
And I would buy with agony and fear
One hour, one little hour of memory.

More verses by Alice Duer Miller